new zealand electronic poetry centre

B E N I T A    K A P E

Dispensary (Close Control)

This is the poems dispensary. The good stewardship
of poems begins on Monday with a glass of water.
Out of a sky blue box every dispensed poem
will have its own independent and recognisable
symbols, your average virus inhibitors added to
the pack when the alert is raised.  There will be
butterflies in the pack and the occasional blues
poem as well as the box itself of blue.
An apportionment of new poems
is usually for a duration of three
months, a month or even a single week.
Corrections, extractions and additions excepted.
Poem indulgences counted in days; broken
down in four segments. That felicitous
dispensing block.
in              morning              seven
four            noon                  days
seg            evening                 a
ments        bedtime              week
Your one two three, one - a sad hobble.
Sometimes the release of poems equals but half
a poem, yet if it strikes the right chemical note
may well be counted as one in a rattling good
bunch of seven.
It may not be necessary to dispense poems
at noon or in the evening unless you
are suffering pain, a delicate muse, or even
a need to rest the feet of the dancing muse.
When the dispensary goes from blue of day
to blue of night nine completed poems are taken
from the bedtime box, cupped to your mouth
on the delicate dish of transfer.  The stewardship
of poems under close control, another day
comes to an end.
I am the caregiver, the one who
has the onerous and humiliating responsibility
of placing each dealt poem onto the shell-like
plate. I count them; you count them.  We are told
two other counting took place before they
were placed in the sealed blue box. And now
in a gulp you throw your head back, swallow
and they are gone, swilled down with a sip
of water. So I never lose track of the blue
box, the sealed blue box, the dispensary;
and another dose of poems.
At the end of the week the dispensary vehicle
arrives; drops off a whole new dispensary box
and its counted contents, and takes away
the empty blue box, replaced with the other.
Come Monday morning I slip
back the lid and view the dispensary
and the dance, the titles, manners
and responsibility. Responsibility number one;
love poems, two; free verse, found poems;
reading and re-reading instructions.
And haibun, the essential haiku slipping in
with syllabic counting remaindered on the tray.
Or the crafty devise of a pantoun; the stanzas
so suitable because some of the lines double up.
The leit-motiv of the dance, come on and do
the blue beat.
Come walk the two blocks to make an early pick up;
sideline all woes. From the dispensary, indisputably
dispensed, a nice day for walking.



Last updated 26 April, 2006