Smiling My Eyes Out, A Poem by Chris Russell

To ask me to stop playing games,

you’re asking me to abandon and betray

the only part of myself that’s never left me.

You know how I ask the player in my head

how he’s doing every morning

and he tells me he’s here?

How next, I ask him where here is

and he sort of points to himself?

He smiles my eyes out with a riddle,

but really just likes to pretend that

he thinks he’s all that? Well,

that’s just how it goes with me.

Inner life trumps all. Games till the end.

These conversations I have with the spirit,

have over the decades become

the only thing I can count on.

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