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Volume 10 • Number 1 • Summer 2018

Peter Leight

The Problem of Change in a World of Uncertainty

In a changing world you expect things to be different all the time,
and if they’re not different they’re about to be different.
Or are they less expected?
You don’t even know what they’re changing into,
this is the law of what did you expect.
This is the law of no wonder.
I mean if you think of it as a composition it’s practically all development,
honestly I think it’s usually better to think about things that haven’t even happened yet,
what does everybody else think?
I often say I guess so,
or just I guess—
honestly I’m thinking there isn’t anything that hasn’t already happened,
it’s better to think about what you aren’t even aware of, like a new bone growing in old tissue, making allowance
for the displacement.
Growth is change,
but of course change isn’t always growth—
you expect it to be different,
is it different from what you expected?
The accuracy isn’t always pinpoint—
not everything that’s disposable
is replaceable,
things often disappear when you’re using them for something, like a product that’s discontinued in order to remind you
you’re devoted to it.
You don’t even know if it’s your problem
or somebody else’s—
you’re not even sure you care.
Or do you care about something you’re not sure about?
When something changes you don’t always know it’s changing,
the way one page isn’t that different from the next
until you start reading,
sometimes you think it is only the uncertainty, the absence of clarity that makes it bearable.
You don’t want to be ungrateful
without being grateful.

Peter Leight lives in Amherst, Massachusetts. He has previously published poems in Paris Review, AGNI, Antioch Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, FIELD, and other magazines.