Dobby Gibson

No Surrender

Now that my poetry is finished

and I’m once again grateful

for what passes as real

in this version of my life, my favorite one,

the one in which, in late evening,

the lake appears

to hold another, more beautiful sky,

never again will any time

so quietly pass.

These perceptions soon lost,

if only because everyone’s first wish

has always been to see

himself through another’s eyes.

By merely looking we make casts

of these shadows, the ones that forever

point back to ourselves

by mimicking the very holes

we punch in the moonlight,

mugging for the camera,

chatting about this and that

even as the bird flies

into the glass door and dies.

There is a precision to absurdity

that illuminates the immeasurability of the truth,

and we’ll never know one another

more intimately than when we share

precisely these kinds of misunderstandings.

Place your hand on my shoulder.

Empty your pockets into mine.

Now you’ve caught your thief.




“No Surrender” was published in Polar, (Alice James Books, 2005).