Spectator and Specimen
By Cody Peters
Bright light where every blemish ever suffered shone like a dark
ray from a broken star in heaven paints the canvas of twilight in another lonely moment
I am alone in this and words to a wordsman are futile messengers and vessels
As a rendering of this everything I seek to leak an account
Pain is a way that direction is delivered and courses corrected
In the hands of some it is a weapon wielded for reasons a spectrum can tell.
It is the most vile of nasty life parts, but second to only one subpart of pain
the worst suffering in the world is pain, but worse than that
I suffering pain with no clear genesis and
without a name.
The world floats in venom behind an illusory pane of glass
when I stray into nights made for sleepers I am joined by little terror goblins
because my mother told me that she was going to do suicide tonight
this happens a lot since father tried to exit the world by refusing medical help
as he slept in pools of perspiration and lost his mental staminaut
His braing inevitably exploded and the told you so gambit meets the
how could you do this to me ruse while what a tragedy is somewhat obscured
by other faces like a train station in Venice always going somewhere but you know better.
There is no name for the terror that has evolved into nameless suffering
I have had doctors shed a tear at my virus of a story
the collective docket of answers asks me the same question and it is
How can you endure? How do you soldier on?
I always smile because I remember the answer as it is supposed to be
and what it really is
It is supposed to be because I believe in a better tomorrow and do my best
but it is really something more childish and silly
I think that I have a unique opportunity to study, from the inside, the life of a man
who has been stricken with so many ills of life that it has become a curiosity to see
exactly how this will turn out and so the true impetus for my apparent strength
is childish curiosity and awe
I am simply amazed at how terrible my life is turning out
and awestruck by the complete absence of any fortunate turns or luck
I have made so many downward turns that I am now heading upwards
I am punch drunk and thrilled
Both as spectator and specimen.
I should be there for them, I moved home to support family while we endured tragedy
My mom told me she is going to kill herself tonight.
I am the cause of her suffering and disarray. I sleep too much and break too easily.
When Dee Ann Rothman suspended me from law school for stealing a phone I didn’t steal
(and actually own said phone myself – it’s identical!)
I collapsed, breathless on the black portion of the parking lot.
When they called for a paramedic I waited for my chance then lept into my car
I had to escape Newark. But the trauma was unbeatable. I began to cry so hard my throat hurt.
I could make it through law school for almost a year when my father was in a coma
But this whimsical charge by Dee Ann Rothman would collapse my house of cards.
I was not able to grip this grenade lobbed by the circumstance.
I was committed to NY Pres.
I was a danger to myself.
I broke and this time is was serious.
One month has passed and today mom told me that
She has “no idea” why I couldn’t continue taking classes and just appeal my suspension.
She told me that she and dad were shocked and disturbed by what had happened
Oh, and she wants to kill herself.
I asked her what I could have done better. She doesn’t know I was passed out and the throat crying stuff.
She thought it a challenge and yelled at me that she didn’t know and why should she always
Have to deal with this. Why did I do this? They can’t believe it. How could this happen?
(read: you’re obviously not telling us something because this is impossible. You know how
you can get.)
Back to verse, and in time for a sweeping muse to collect me and drive
since narrative pales in comparison to fun, I will put away and then I
and pick up my darker skies ripped into a cascading sunrise although part of it left unannounced
and without sufficient plain-clothes security to beckon day 2 of this riddle chain of disappointment
I am the cause
I sleep too much
I smile too much
I leave cups in weird places
I ate too much bread
I didn’t eat enough dinner and don’t know how much this costs and by the way owe mom and dad
70 thousand dollars for raising me – oh little things like helping me pay for books, my car, and lending a hand with those pesky doctor bills that were another luxury my parents afforded me which of course should be paid back with a generous 0 percent interest despite the fact that said debt goes back to 1992 when I was 14 years old and starting to become a real financial burden but lucky for me there was a benevolent bank of mom and dad to loan me the money I needed for all the luxuries in life and that they had a wonderful records system which would keep track of every dollar borrowed secretly until an opportunity came along to collect the money which of course is rightfully that of the parents because I ASKED to be BORN and asked to have a cold and well, the world is tough so you better get used to it, you’ve been a burden ever since you were born and here’s the bill son, here’s what it cost to raise you, here’s what you owe us for feeding you and clothing you and all those thing SPOILED children get because when I was a kid I walked everywhere and worked since I was a fetus and no one ever gave me anything but grief and that’s the way the world is and you have to just get used to it but get used to it after you pay us back 70 thousand dollars for being your parents then you can consider yourself current on the 17 year line of credit we have opened for you because we are good parents. Pay up. The money is compensation for injuries suffered in your jaws-of-life car accident? So what, we want our cut.
So what, we want our cut.
So what, we want our cut.
So what, we want our cut
So what, we want our cut
My mom is downstairs complaining to my father about me
I am a burden. I am broken. I am a failure.
I am the specimen
and the spectator.
You just don’t get better seats to a tragedy than this.
Aren’t you curious about how this will turn out?
Here’s a hint:
Someone is going to die