Still Life | David Cappella

Source: Sonja Quintero

The old recliner under the maple

on the curbside waits, fated for pickup,

by some scrounging passerby.


The nagging dry cough, a side effect

from pills the doctor insists I take,

bites deep into my lungs.


The drop of olive oil on the stove

I forgot to sponge off, squirms black,

covered by those rife monomorium.


Life is a still life, direct and dumb.

The pasta con tonno tastes hopeless.

A shadow slices the kitchen table.


The mind, fraught with words,

dances a tortuous bump and grind,

a cartoonish tarantella of thought.


Even the woodpile nags me –

turkey-tail mushrooms sprout

from two exposed oak logs.


A heavy cloud rolls over trees

bearing down like a heavy note

in Chopin’s D-flat major prelude.


Maybe it will rain, maybe not.

Today the heart, an unwashed dish,

stares at me, insists to be picked up.


I do not have the strength

to lift a book. Three startled crows

strafe the neighbor’s garage,


then veer at a sharp angle straight

up and away toward who knows where.

Who knows?





David Cappella, English professor at Central Connecticut State University.