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  • Jimmy Broccoli

"Is It To Be or Not To Be?" And I Replied, "Oh Why Ask Me?"

I answer my phone –

which is something I hardly ever do these days

But, I see it is you calling,

so I say into the receiver, “Hello, this is Jimmy”


You tell me you feel lonely, and isolated, and sad

You tell me the sky is opening up

Rain is beginning to fall upon the town –

upon the small farming town where you live -

and the rain is falling outside of your bedroom window –

You tell me you are watching it fall –

watching it fall from the grey and blackish clouds above

You tell me the Weather Channel predicts record-breaking rainfall –

and flooding

“I don’t know if I’m going to make it”, you tell me

- and I listen


I am sitting at my desk in my bedroom and look out the window –

I see a day of sunshine with the birds chirping wildly only feet away –

my apartment is even with the treetops –

so the chirping birds and I share the same view –

and I’m able to hear their beautiful birdsong


You tell me it’s difficult to move on –

a life without him..

His gentle and kind smile, the way he looked in jeans –

…the anniversaries, the birthdays he never forgot about –

and the surprises of flowers at work or waking up to a note on the kitchen table –

reminders of how much he loved you



You tell me the game of life is hard to play

You tell me you’re gonna lose it anyway…

and I don’t know what to say

…so I remain silent, to my dismay



You tell me the storm is growing wickedly outside of your bedroom window

You tell me you are just waiting to see if a cow flies by

I chuckle slightly and smile – though it can’t be seen on the other end of the call

I look out my bedroom window and the sun is rising higher in the sky –

soon (if I sit here long enough) the sunlight will shine through my window and shine upon my face – warming my skin

You tell me you can hear the wind whip wildly and violently outside your window –

as if it wants to get in – as if it is trying to get in


You tell me you don’t know if you’re going to make it –

I hear the words you are saying to me -

and I understand the words you are saying –

and I understand how you mean them -

but I don’t know how to respond


You say, “sometimes living is a bitch, ya know?

sometimes it’s a goddamn fucking bitch”

and I say I know – though I’m certain these are not the right words to say

What are the right words? What are the right words? I ask myself –

Finding the right words may be urgent –

finding them may be important –

I’m a writer – why can’t I find the right fucking words?

why don’t I know the right words to say?

the words you need to hear (!) –

the words you need to hear me say out of my mouth –

knowing I am saying these words to you (!)

me, as your friend –


You wait quietly on the other end of the line –

while my mind reaches for the right words…


You interrupt the silence and say,

“you seem to know about these things –

I’ve read your poems and your short stories –

you seem to know about these things” you say again –

“I kind of don’t think I’m going to make it.

Sometimes I just don’t know, ya know?” you whisper…

and I do not know how to reply


suddenly, I no longer hear birdsong outside my bedroom window

suddenly, I don’t see the sun shining and I can’t feel it’s warmth upon my skin


Through the phone receiver I can hear the wind outside of your bedroom window –

I hear it howling – wild and violent –

I can hear the heavy rainfall pound against the glass of your bedroom window –

as if it wants to get in – as if it is trying to get in


It’s near the end of the call and you tell me how much you love me –

and you thank me for being a trusted and amazing friend –

with urgency I respond, “I love you so much, my friend –

I wish I could be there with you now – in your town – in your bedroom –

sitting with you, so we can listen to the wind howl together –

so we can watch the pounding rain assault your bedroom window, together –

together, we won’t let any of it in


You tell me you love me for the second time during the call –

you sound distant –


we both hang up our phones


and – I think - you just said goodbye


… as the wind and the rain enter your room

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