inter.library.loans I

paperwork for strangers
is best left unfolded

since you don’t know how it’s filed
–whether in folios
          upright like reeds
–or envelopes
          dangling like wind-chimes
          from clotheslines

whose to say,
        the way
a stranger might file paperwork
        or not file it,
they might just pile it, up! up!
until it shifts under its own importance
        creating layers in eras
          we might discover
   after the roots have grown stiff
 and words are sap and honey.

paperwork for strangers
is intimate that way
      personal/impersonal
vital, lifelike, removed
written in secret–in a way–and not so
rushed. It takes time to say
  exactly what you mean
        to a stranger
        out of context
without clarification
  to say exactly what you mean
is best left unfolded
so as not to imply
            or assume
            or limit
the life of a document
      which you have sent away.

–ECW