They won’t leave you alone, but you think this
Is all they’ll do to you: a soft distraction
Draining your life. Suction, not satisfaction.
‘Just one more thing.’ They are your only business.
Meanwhile the things that matter now are lost,
Your life surrendered to what matters least.
On a far, wide field stands your once-success;
Once, you swam in thoughts of happiness.
You’re older now, and also cynical.
It’s easy to make fun of those who care.
Your wishes hang on falling stars, your jar
Of insects dead upon the windowsill.
The ducks settle in: they’re soft and sweet.
They wear the look of those with plenty to eat.
Originally published in The Rotary Dial
Kim Bridgford, who passed away on Sunday morning, was the director of Poetry by the Sea: A Global Conference. She also directed the West Chester University Poetry Conference from 2010 through 2014. As editor-in-chief at Mezzo Cammin, a journal of poetry by women, she founded The Mezzo Cammin Women Poets Timeline Project, which is designed to become the world’s largest database of women poets. Bridgford was the author of nine books of poetry, including Human Interest (White Violet, 2016), Doll (Main Street Rag, 2014), In the Extreme: Sonnets about World Records (Contemporary Poetry Review Press, 2007), and Undone (WordTech Communications, 2003).