The sound of garbage trucks
wakes me every Wednesday morning.
It's the alarm clock I can't shut off,
the neighbor whose noise
I can't complain about to anyone in authority.
It's the disturbance that just is, that's necessary,
that adds something to my quality of life
even as it takes away.

Think of all those; dull green bags on the sidewalk,
boxes with chair legs protruding,
trash barrels filled with scraps, half-eaten chicken legs,
peach seeds, stuff that would overflow the house,
stink the sweetness from the love in it,
if it weren't for these weekly collections.

What about the sicknesses of the body if no one came
in the early hours of morning to haul them out?
What of the despair? The anger?
Imagine the dead still living with you,
what rotting corpses would do for their memories.
And then, all the people you've ever been with,
huddled in the same rooms, nothing to come by,
wrench them out, dump them elsewhere.

Still, I wish that the removal of our waste
was softer, less intrusive, or maybe happened
at our convenience, not its.
I could sleep through what's no longer mine
without waking up like what's left over.