The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders is getting an update in the months ahead, I’m told. Love and Divine Birthright are being classified as diseases. This comes hot on the heels of a decision to make protesting illegal unless the law is on your side, which I did not vote for proposition Catch-22 I assure you, but will be applied to me just as well. I have found an old military pamphlet which Imperial Japan handed out to their infantry during the great war, which is giving me comfort. It doesn’t matter how great your enemy, your inferiority of numbers, or lack of munitions. All it takes to triumph is an unstoppable SPIRIT. It advises training your soul to harden itself, to fight harder, sleep less, need less food, and simply by your strength of force and love of your patria, you shall prevail.
All around me I see this enchroaching faithless monster. It is in my cereal cupboard. I decide this is a matter for the milkman.
I tell him he needs to up his deliveries. Do not simply come when I am not home. My son begins to call you ‘father’, I plead, but he tells me ‘do not cry’.
I am a strict behaviorist. I open the window, and only God knows why. I consider taking the vegetables I buy at the store and planting them in the garden, to see if seeds explode from beneath the earth.
I bide my time.
The only comfort I can afford is to walk the neighborhood, pretend I am the deliverer. Spy into the others’ houses, as if I were the one to drop a letter that they awaited. Soon they will discover I am mad.
I wish that they’d swoop down in a country lane
Late at night when I’m driving
But I fear I may have to settle for being run down by one of them in a car,
as I am out protesting the closing of the gate