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Oct 2013
The Editor

Late in office,
sour coffee taste
the single constituent
of his yellow bloodstream,
The Editor.

Way up high,
72nd floor.

The city's twinklers mocking.

Life is ours, outside,
where explorers dare,
not inside your
cubicle.

That word, cubicle,
a sugar-substitute for
coffin.

Another 12+ day.
Empty apartment waiting.

But that no matter.

Old news, her scent,
almost unnoticeable
except for the lavender hand-soap.

On the desk, a manuscript.
A child's coloring book,
vibrant, original word verses.

The older man lived, loved words,
An editor now, by trade.

Once, he baby-dreamed.

Shaping moments in the lives
of thousands, with tastings of,
with his words.

The answer given, graded, long ago.
Offered a choice,
outrageous misfortune elected,
the arrow taken, his was the
"or not to be."

Instead,
on the desk, a manuscript.
a child's coloring book,
vibrant, original word verses.

An unsolicited gift.
By the hundreds, they arrived.

To his desk, the mail room delivered,
trained to snicker by prior generations,
at this lowly assignment.

This one different.

Original, raw,
full of ingredient-courage that
posed the questions
we all ask, answered,
in a nouveau riche way,
not a poseur-way.

Well, so well, he knew Brutus's words:

We at the height are ready to decline.
There is a tide in the affairs of men
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries.
On such a full sea are we now afloat,
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.
^

His tide, his high tide, missed,
gone out

Instead at the heights, on the 72nd floor,
in the shallows, the bad miseries of
chances missed, ventures lost,
his own words, measured down,
never up,
yet he floated on a sea of others,
drowning but never dying.

On the desk, a manuscript.
a child's coloring book,
vibrant, original word verses,
a young author, unaware,
his gifts could rule the world.

Just another submission.

No one would notice,
the missed fortune,
if it were lost at sea.

Just another tsunami body,
thousands of worn words
suffocating, still born,
still dead.

Just another Brutus omission.

Another tide, washing in,
another washout day,
except for the
coloring book, someone else's
on his desk.

Dear Sir/Madam.
Thank you for bringing your manuscript to our attention.
We receive many unsolicited submissions and at this time, we are unable to...


Yours truly,


Some are artists,
Some are house painters.
Some craft, other just tidy up
the empty studios of the real.
Did the windows in his office open?
Somewhere his best effort,
paper tarnished by metallic dust,
sweat garnished,
vanquishing tears bookmarks,
a homeless one.

No place to return to,
for to be homeless,
words had to have had a home.

Whose?
His.

^ Julius Ceasar
(IV.ii.269–276)
Saw pieces of Julius Ceasar. Came home did some editing.
This corny poem, an embarrassment, came out of the the intersection.
At the crossroads, post, publish, or ****** thyself more in little ways.
Nat Lipstadt
Written by
Nat Lipstadt
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