more than

it is more than falling
into a booze coma
and calling it sleep.
it is more than waking at 3 a.m.
in sweat and terror.
it is more than wrestling
with poems and prose
before you can take on the sun.
it is more than hot water
burning the back
and the built-up mildew
cracking between the toes
in the shower.
it is more than a morning scotch,
the journal, and the weather report.
it is more than baseball news.
it is more than contemplating
american anti-intellectualism
on a stalled train,
as all of brooklyn goes mad
staring at their clocks and watches.
it is more than getting caught in cold rain
on nostrand avenue,
having the water bring up the dirt
in your denim.
it is more than smelling of dust.
it is more than sitting in the mix
of another day, composing silliness
as a means to compensate,
knowing that all you've written above
will happen again tomorrow
or maybe the next day.
it is more than being one day worse off
than the last.
it is more than denying god for a little peace
and quiet.
it is more than all of that.
but it is less than that too.


John Grochalski
John Grochalski is a writer whose column, 'The Lost Yinzer,' appears quarterly in The New Yinzer ( His upcoming book of poems The Noose Doesn't Get Any Looser After You Punch Out is coming out via Six Gallery Press in 2008.