. The Lyme Brain’s Refrain, or At the Cupboard What am I doing? What am I doing? What am I, what am I, what am I doing? I’m doing something—something I’m doing— But what am I, what am I, what am I doing? What am I doing? Where am I going? Why am I here, and why am I not knowing? Knowing I’m doing and somewhere I’m going, But where I am going I’ve no way of knowing. Where am I going? When am I knowing? Tomorrow or Tuesday or when it starts snowing? When it starts snowing I’ll know where I’m going, But ‘til it starts snowing, to go without knowing? When am I knowing? Who am I seeing? Was what I was doing a seeing or being? Or finding or looking or thinking or fleeing? Or am I now seeing my looking for being? Looking for being, Finding for doing, Tomorrow and Tuesday and fleeing and shooing… Was one of these being the thing I was doing? Or was it an— Oh! That’s what I was doing. . . The Requirements of a Parakeet A parakeet needn’t be clever. A parakeet needn’t be smart. A parakeet needn’t tie knots in your head Or poke little holes in your heart. A parakeet needn’t keep secrets. It needn’t tell riddles or rhymes. It needn’t be savvy or sagely or sharp Or even keep up with the times. A parakeet might make you smile, But such is by no means required. It might make you shiver or quiver or frown. It might make you quite simply tired. A parakeet, then, you might notice, Can nearly be any odd way. It needn’t be written, it needn’t be heard, It needn’t be pungent or prickly or third, It needn’t, I hasten to add, be a bird, For parakeet, sadly, was never the word I ever intended to say. . . Jack DesBois is a singer, actor, and storyteller. He gives annual Epiphany season performances of “The Western Star,” which he wrote in 2016. He self-published a chapbook of short poems in 2018. As a singer, Jack has had the good fortune to solo in several of the great works of Baroque Oratorio, including Handel’s Messiah (Bass) and Esther (Haman) and J.S. Bach’s St. John Passion (Jesus). Jack lives in Topsfield, Massachusetts.