PARANOIA (by Michael Dennis Browne)

If you go to the zoo, be sure to take your passport

When you drive on the freeway, cars follow you.

Someone opens your mail, two hands
that come out of your shirt-sleeves.

Your dog looks at you, he does not like you.

At the driving test the cop is tired. He has sat up
all night, screening your dreams.

If you go to the zoo, be sure to take your passport.

Everywhere you go, the dog goes with you. Beautiful women
come up to you and ask for the dog’s telephone number.

You go to teach; everyone who passes you in the corridor
knows you never finished Tristram Shandy.
You are the assistant professor no one associates with.

At the yoga class you finally get
into the lotus position.
You are carried home.

When you close your eyes in meditation, all you see is breasts.

When you turn the refrigerator to defrost, the TV drips.

Across the street, the pigeons call softly to each other
like the FBI on a stakeout.

When you walk to the post office and see the flag at half-mast
you know you have died.