They sit apart at parties, wilting
like neglected houseplants. Their music
is easily confused with white noise.
When the booze runs out, none
of them has the nerve to shoulder
into his coat and hike to a nearby
liquor store for more. You never
catch them wearing bright colors.
Their laughs are half-swallowed.
They yawn a lot, wallow in apology,
kneel, plead. Their sea of griefs
has been rising since humanity began.
So what’s their plan? Most of the matter
in the universe is invisible, and the meek
teeter on the cusp of the unseen. When
we notice them at all, we’re distracted by
bowed heads, tight smiles: benign disguises
behind which lurks an eternity of mildness,
and a ravening, saber-toothed surprise.