michael brownstein

 

 

WHY I NEVER READ DIRECTIONS

--because of Bridget Gage-Dixon

When you open the box,
a bookcase, a desk, perhaps a go-cart,
do not read the directions.
Empty the contents across the room--
the arias, your weight in empathy,
every word said in anger, vowels,
memories of passion and dismay,
temper tantrums, the cost of nagging.
Litter the floor with emotion and logic,
that song you always sing in the shower,
and let the adult in you become a rainbow.
Soon something will become what it is to become,
a place to sit upon, to implode,
the very elementals found in a black hole.
Go with it. Do not let go.
Love, too, is an adventure.
Soon everything will make sense,
the wind will calm down,
you will join a pack of clouds,
and when you rain, let the design of water
dripping across windows,
evaporating on walkways,
matting hair into something else,
explode into the energy of a bus shelter,
everyone running to it until
it is so crowded only laughter,
delight, hair dripping wet,
clothing drenched, cleansed hands,
only shared experiences matters.

 

Michael H. Brownstein has been widely published throughout the literary press. His work has appeared in The Caf Review, American Letters and Commentary, Meridian Anthology of Contemporary Poetry, Free Lunch, The Pacific Review and many others. He has been featured in a number of online poetry journals including Milk and poetrysuperhighway.com. In addition, he has eight chapbooks including The Shooting Gallery (Samisdat Press), Poems from the Body Bag (winner of the Ommation Press Poetry Chapbook contest), A Period of Trees (Snark Press), and What Stone Is (Fractal Edge Press).

                                  

Brownstein taught upper grade science in the Chicago public schools; continues his studies with authentic African instruments; conducts grant writing workshops for educators; and records performance pieces with grants from the City of Chicago s Cultural Affair Department, the BP Leadership Grant, and others.

 

 

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