30 July 2008 | Vol. 8, No. 2

working on it

so i got tethered to

the fixing of things—

funny this jar won't open hot

or cold, funny this engine

had more parts before i rebuilt it.

it seems a mind

can be much like this

old bike i've been working on,

the one i keep mentioning

over the phone. now, the bike

seems to have a voice,

seems to shrug in its stance: impatience.

i've added it up, charted the bike

like an atlas—spoke, cog, sprocket.

something, though, isn't right.

it just sort of

half works.

you say what would the world be

without a script or a manual, a knot

to undo. i wonder

whether words are

a cruelty of sorts

or scraps of metal bent slightly

out of form. wonder how we use the telephone

to muster up a return, to fall

into the pothole, that is,

an apology.

About the author:

Cade Collum is the author of two chapbooks titled The Dogs of Havana (Red Hydra Press, 2008) and Lion-Froth Crown (Red Hydra Press, forthcoming). His poems have also appeared or are forthcoming in Vulcan and Ginosko. He received a B.A. in Psychology and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, where he is currently living and working as a full-time Instructor.

For further reading:

See the complete list of work by Cade Collum at 42opus. Browse the contents of 42opus Vol. 8, No. 2, where "working on it" ran on July 30, 2008. List other work with these same labels: poetry.

42opus is an online magazine of the literary arts.

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