a value that stands out from the main body of data,
                   may indicate errors made collecting or processing the data.

it's summer and sinan is again
high in the mountains, in his room
at the attic of his parents' home,
translating ovid

his mum and dad and all his living relatives
have never heard about the poet,
they are shepherds, now in the fields,
the koran is their only book,
candles the only light at night

parents' occupations, their years spent at school,
number of books on the shelf, a city or rural home
trace a child's life, the wizards say, and tom, dick
and harry prove this all around the globe,
fitting nicely on a straight line
in the scatterplot

but where is sinan's spot?

this summer, with a new manuscript completed,
he is moving away, again, higher, to a lonely space
above all, hurting the symmetry, fooling the mean,
making only troubles for those busy with
matters of consequence

he has to be deleted,
there is no doubt

you are with us
or you are not at all, laughs dick laying on the dream line,
a survivor, a perfect average, the one who speaks all we want
to know about ourselves

a click of the button,
and that's it,
the error is fixed,
the candle died,
sinan is sinking down
into a dark of the crammed recycling bin

                  First published in MAG, Summer 2003