The Shine Journal

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Letter to David Foster Wallace


Sean Thomas


Of course you wouldn't know but the rain breaks
long oval ripples over the South Alaskan bay, thousands
of trace eyelids wilting in slush. Screw the rain. To hell
with the rain. Its tragic misty silence. They said your
name on the radio today. Said. Spoke. Do you hear me?
A short blip burned into the din of news, the trash
heap of white noise flotsam, carrying an infinity
of brokenness inside the microphoned voice. You left
this world just when it needed you, when this world
needed words, not symbols or signifiers but breathing
roaring sobbing dancing words to crack spiderweb
seams of sunlight in the clouds. I hate this
weather, this sky, rain-gray, bloating over the bay
and snow-mud slopes of the glacial mountains
like an overfed god, drooling, perverse, obscene. You
would have loved it. You would have laughed and
cried. The rain. You asshole. That's what I want to say, you
fucker, the rain, how could you leave us here, how could
you leave us, but then I know the pain, I know the days
blending into one long hellfire day and I know thoughts
crushing panes of glass in your head and I know
the vacuum of self bleeding through your pores, the rain
torrenting down, I know, millions of falling fingertips
hitting the dirt-snow mountains, the brown-ice
bay, while you wail meaningless words and I read

these words and I curse you. I carry Infinite Jest
against my hip every day, a closed soft-cover, a goddamn
brick of a book, holding it like a gravestone as I walk
the rocky beach with the clouds breaking over the mountains
and the rain rippling the bay into forever, wishing I wasn't
so damn angry, wishing there was a meaningful way
to say good-bye. Good-bye. Somehow. A word. Good-bye.

Sean has spent the last four years traveling around South America, Asia, India, Africa,  the Middle East. He is still searching for a home. His work can be read in The Vestal Review, JMWW, Fickle Muses, A Cappella Zoo, and Weirdyear.

Motivation: The poem speaks for itself, I hope.

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Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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