Don't Go There

Mark Jarman

          That’s where they make the sausage of the self. That’s why you shouldn’t go there. You shouldn’t go there because the egos are rehearsing and you would not be welcome. That’s where one slimy id after another has been turned over and you don’t want to see. You shouldn’t go there exactly because you want to see. That’s where seeing is believing and you will not believe what you see. It’s a lot of effort for very little, a waste of time, and you’ll never get back the time you waste. Don’t go there because you want to go there, don’t go there because you must. Stay where you are, even if where you are is where you went when you should not have gone. You went there. Don’t go there.

Mark Jarman is Centennial Professor of English, Emeritus, at Vanderbilt University. His latest collection of poetry is Zeno’s Eternity.
Originally published:
June 28, 2023

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