Scientists call it the measure of the disorder

or randomness in a system.

Too abstract?

Then reduce it to this: it’s hard,

very hard, to make things better

but it’s always possible to make them worse.

Thus relationships, children, companies, countries.

Entropy is the clock that forever

runs forward and down until it no longer

resembles a clock at all.

Meanwhile the love leaks out of marriages

one molecule at a time,

airlines beat passengers in their seats

and drag them screaming off the plane,

and we drop bombs on our enemies so big

they dwarf our own disorder, or so

we think, or would think, if thinking were something

still within our grasp.

I must make time in my desert of a day

to visit the grave of Robinson Jeffers and tell

his silent stone that our republic

no longer shines as it perishes

and entropy is the reason.

I’m sure that will comfort his departed shade,

long since dissipated into millions of strange shadows

by that other, more efficient entropy, death.


Kurt Luchs


Kurt Luchs has poems published or forthcoming in Former People Journal, Into the Void, Minetta Review, Poydras Review, Triggerfish Critical Review, Otis Nebula, Sheila-Na-Gig, Right Hand Pointing, Roanoke Review, Wilderness House Literary Review, Crosswinds Poetry Journal, Grey Sparrow Journal, Noctua Review, Quail Bell Magazine, and Antiphon, among others. He founded the literary humor site, and has written humor for the New Yorker, the Onion and McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, as well as writing comedy for television (Politically Incorrect and the Late Late Show) and radio (American Comedy Network). In September 2017 Sagging Meniscus Press will publish his humor collection, It’s Funny Until Someone Loses an Eye (Then It’s Really Funny).

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