The Third Thing

Why can’t I ever remember the third thing in a series?

My wife told me to bring three things

to the party and I can’t remember the third thing.

I was supposed to bring the diaper bag,

the USB-speakers,

and the blaahhh.

What was it? What the hell?

I can never remember.


Where does it go?

Must be a problem with my input network.

The information receptors are only running

at 40% functionality since those mental resources

are being routed to more important

tasks like remembering passwords and kids’ birth dates.

Or maybe it’s a faulty filing system in my head.

The misfiring floret of neurons is like a file clerk

that has died at his desk

and his assignments have piled up in disarray

and no one’s coming behind him

to put everything where it belongs.

I’m a malfunctioning Task Machine,

the Vonnegutian 3000 way past its warranty.


Two things are fine. Three things are just too much.

Crosby, Stills and hhmmm

Earth, Wind and guuuh

Maybe it’s ADD or an early sign of dementia?

Or maybe remembering two things is good enough

and my brain is automatically

sorting the items and putting the least important

thing at the end.


But in the wee hours, the third thing comes dancing

across the stage in my mind with jazz hands–

Here I am!! How could you forget?

It’s me, the new camera! Of course you need me at the party, dummy.

Then it gloats and I feel stupid and shown up

by a harmless piece of data.


I hope the third thing is never so important

that its omission is life or death–

never a time when I’m engulfed in flame

and I stop

and drop


squint blankly up into space,

waiting for the connection

that never comes.


Thing No 3


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