Happy (poem)

“I am happy  all the time   

“Recently, at my father’s funeral, this bothered
many people….”

“People, family, friends before the funeral had not mentioned to Mother
how unusual and strange it is that I am happy all the time,
but under these circumstances with Dad’s death
many were extremely  bothered by
my happiness at the funeral”

“People, uncontainable, began to talk and say  things
Within weeks,
I am invited to mother’s house
for tea.
I walk in
The room is full of people
Family, friends
all sit looking at me
Mother tells me ”

“This is an intervention!
We have a doctor here.
You cannot leave until you hear us out”

“I smile at mom
I love her
I smile at my brothers who look scared
I say ‘Okay’ with excitement
I was happy to see everyone”

“I love hearing the sound of everyone’s voices
as they talk.  I find them to be beautiful.
Each person tells me stories”

“where I should of been sad, or
where I should of been angry, or
where I should of been scared, or
where I should of been disgusted,
but I wasn’t”

“The doctor says to me quite bluntly”

“You are different.
You know this right?”

“I look at him
I smile
I say Yes   Yes I am'”

“I smile and agree to be committed
to a hospital for six weeks”

“At hospital, the doctors are unable to cure happiness
They start playing Leonard Cohen music
hoping I will get depressed
I listen through the music at
what is behind the music
I tell them ‘I love Leonard Cohen’
I smile”

“The doctors then put on World War II footage
of people being killed”

“I look through pictures
being projected
I see what is behind pictures
I smile”

“I am discharged
The doctors give me red bracelet that says U HUD
Stands for Unrecoverable Happy with Un-anxiety Disorder…
…means    I am happy,  not nervous,   all the time.”

“The day I am discharged I  visit
mother.  This night, the American debate is on TV
Clinton vs Trump”

“I watch.  I stop smiling.
Mother stares in awe looking at me.  This is the first time she sees me not smile”

“She says ‘Your’re cured!
My boy is cured!'”

“She is happy like a child bursting at the seams
wanting to open presents at a birthday.
This happy!”

“She leaves the room to call my brothers”

“I have done it.
I had always wanted my mother to be happy
She is happy
I smile and listen to her talk to my brothers
on the phone in the other room”

“As Mom comes back in the room I stop smiling
I stare at nothingness
my face expressionless.
She is so excited”

“I looked towards her and see nothingness
and do not smile”
“She leaves the room”

“I am alone and happy”


After completing this poem, I thought of  the playwright Harold Pinter.

Picture of Andy Warhal by X4n6 Wiki Commons


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