Bobby Taylor: Measure Twice

Spring '14 TOC

 in your driveway
            I sat in my car and wrote
                        just trying to make sense of some things.

I knew it was your driveway
            because it was your house
                        you told us that many times.

“This is my house” you would say.

Mama says that the day
                they took you to the hospital to die
                          you turned back and looked
                                     as long as you could
                                                  at the house.

She said “you knew you would never
                        see it again.”

            Yesterday I sat in your driveway
                        and I measured my anger at you
                                                 my failures
                                                 my shortcomings
                        my thrown away feelings
                           and I felt sorry for you.
            I measured my sins against yours
                             and I felt sorry for me.

I remember being down on Music Row
            drinking to fit in
            and liking it.
I remember making the choice
            to let myself sink to the bottom
            to learn about Christianity there
            to place myself with the lowest.

            I gave up on trying to be more.
            I remember how good the whiskey tasted
                        when I gave up
                        every time I gave up.

            “This is just who I am” I said.
            “I don’t have to be anything more
             this is just who I am.”


                        like a saw

I’ve got a chance
this time
a way to make my life work
like it has never worked before
like it is—almost.

If I can write it all down
and draw a circle around it
give it some new order
            some new meaning
                        that it did not have before.


measure twice
                                                cut once



Bobby Taylor


Not Enough Night
Not Enough Night
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