I wouldn’t mind hallucinating –
it’s such a quiet day in the house
with nothing going on that a few
colorful visions would be a welcome
distraction from the curse of ennui.
I learned the word ennui in college
and that ennui could kill a man
if he were a French existentialist.
Maybe if I suddenly gave up drinking
I would come down with a case of
delirium tremens. I’d get the shakes
and see white mice and pink elephants –
a herd of pink elephants thundering
toward me sitting in my easy chair.
Led by the wise old matriarch,
they parade before me, trunk to tail,
with hardly a glance my way, as if
I were some lonely bull elephant,
one of those high savannah drifters
who long ago went off by himself
to live a solitary and quiet existence.

Richard Jones’s most recent books of poems are Stranger on Earth (Copper Canyon Press, 2018) and Avalon (Green Linden Press, 2020). The editor of the literary journal Poetry East, he will celebrate forty years of publishing with Poetry East #100, a volume called The Bliss of Reading. www.RichardJonesPoetry.com

See more of his work in 8.4 and 8.4 and 4.1 and 4.3 and 5.3

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