A Difficult Piece


The grass around
my father’s grave.
To walk on blades
I can’t help but feel.

Does he see me struggle
over sunken markers
careful not to wake the dead?

I’d like to share the latest.
Everything I’m after.
News about a dream job
my own place to live
the love of a woman who finds
me worthy of affection.

There’s little to report.
I speak of world affairs.
Warmer winters.
Now he knows the score
of last year’s Super Bowl.

I get the sense
of talking to myself
above a whisper.

Over headstones
fixed in solemn rows
birds assuming

c b snoad


Hire Purpose

I’m good at reading about life from a distance. Making a living is where my trouble lies.

Do I find a job around my passion—namely, reading and writing—or do I hold a job and pursue my passion for words on the side? For a number of years now, because of my anxiety and depression, I’ve been unable to work consistently, thus delaying a move in either direction.

I’m still searching for that courage the characters in my books exhibit with such grace. It’s easy to share their outlooks, their suffering, their encounters with tragedy and triumph. But facing the indifference of the universe and pressing on—inventing my life and living without excuses—these are challenges I feel compelled to abandon before the starting bell sounds.

Figuring out my place and dealing with my illness is work enough now, but it’s time to emphasize practice over theory. Be realistic, I tell myself, recalling a Roman proverb I found in one of my philosophy books not long ago: “First live, then philosophize.”

Somehow I’ve approached things backwards. I continue the struggle to turn my life around.