We arrive sleepy and bent - a crumpled wad of desire for something new. These wet hot streets - a vistors reckoning - grief. But that is what you carried here my dear - packed neatly in your bags - folded, creased, alert. I tried to find the thing that made London her own. But, belonging to everyone and spread so densely through street upon alley upon court with flesh, she's a union of nations at once - scurrying about in search. The homeless prefer, it seems, to sleep in broad daylight beside a riot of words. There are no shoes, a tired beard, an altar of water bottles left at his feet. I thought about quitting marriage when I couldn't summon joy - as if London should ring that old bell back into awakening. But it was dinner time again - and every other door an open mouth for feeding. So we dine so we sleep so we rise once more and when you say good-bye i love you at last.
i cannot say why it should be okay to have faith drawn out on a limb hanging mid air as if some sort of reconciling could warrant what's broken. there is no word nor sign nor even prayer that might at once undo the ruddy ache of having and losing and finally losing heart. what is terrible then is that we love. and our loving, like balloons in a hurricane, is torn from us - even as we covet the softest sweetness inside - where only his aliveness has touched you - where only he has been for you. i imagine though that he finds you - even now, through crooked slumber and honest despair - where if your eyes were closed you both could see and even if you did not touch you both could feel - there where your loving has allowed a living and a leaving - and both as honest as a thousand migrant winds - back and forth forever undoing and confirming what we think we know about life about death about love.
i jumped off the bridge last night in my heart and now some twelve hours later i still haven't hit the bottom - the immeasurable depth of being, too terrific to slam up against with something so simple as flesh. so i wait. think about the crawling out - the accent - the way back up to where things are indeed okay even inside the darkness. even with it. the frailty of being human - a hoax. i know the clouds are grey for a reason - that there will be more rain and disaster. but also i know, from it will come new growth and this is where i rest against the walls of a weary heart - pull myself back out and up - where i can dare again for joy.
when i was a child i very much wanted to be famous - so that everyone would know how special i was. at four i decided when i grew up i would marry johnny cash so i could make him happy. they seemed such useful goals. now,as an adult,i only want to be more reflective - so that the people who love me can see how special they are instead. and if i could - i would marry my husband again - this time not trying to make him anything different than he already is. i know i got a much better life than i deserve. when i go to bed at night, i try to think of new ways to pay it forward. sometimes it's just shutting up.
the fairies are coming in their holiday sparkles with their christmas jingles and their hanukah lights - and you can almost feel the cheer thickening the air. it's nice to be alive when there is extra hope afloat. and to watch people cozying up and sitting closer - to beat the cold. mostly, though, i like the sound of you snoring - like a sedated lion harmless and safe beside me.
i watched a child reach for a star and i could understand how she thought she might make it hers. i watched an elderly man shuffle a little to the left to clear a path for youth and i could understand how that might sting. i watched the crease under your eye disappear when you stopped smiling - and i realized i might lose you. there is nothing like time to heal a wound and to inflict one. i know you are mine and that you'll be mine forever - but there is a certain finality to the crease under your eye when you are not smiling - and it makes me realize - forever is not long enough.
sometimes people ask you a question and then get mad at you because they don't like the answer. sometimes you give someone your trust and they give you back a knuckle sandwich. sometimes you think every little thing is a-okay in the world and then you wake up. sometimes it hurts to laugh and feels good to cry and you have to ask am i little crazy? someone who really loves you will say "no."
the rain is back this time like a no nonsense bag lady collecting hours and their passing. i wanted to say something important today but there was turkey and cranberry mold funeral potatoes and green beans crispy onion, corn and cream - plus cookies and cake and pie. that shut me up like a million lazy minutes and all i could say was thank you. when we decide to age together and i mean really age - without all the trying - i hope you will remember that i am cute.
last night i played hooky - not on purpose - but because how do you stop or even think to stop and write a poem when you are living right in the middle of one? He is 92 and was married for 67 years. What's left of her, besides memories is tucked away in drawers - clip-on earrings, vintage prescription lenses empty bags in side of empty bags. socks. he wants me to have some pieces of hers - gives me gold and diamonds precious metal and stone. i want the tarnished chinese wiseman in the costume jewelry drawer. i will wear it i say until you move into my house - old man. we will grow young together now.
tonight everything is sleepy - even the dark itself - but i am trying to scratch one more mark into the empty sky like so many takes on film. the crowded day has left - staggered off like an edgy lover i didn't think to follow home. and i am thankful there is an end to every end. for now, i will pull back the covers and welcome sleep in. she will shack up between us, hip to thigh, my palm on your ear. always a tumble of elbow and chin, eye socket and tooth. me and my bumbling grace finding my way to your warm.
i took a break today from caring too much. ate grilled cheese and onion rings at the same meal - mixed the colors and whites in the washing machine - turned off the ringer on a work day. i asked once, when the sun hit my cheek - as if it were July and not November - how to be useful, even in the midst of trying not to care. there was never a time when i did not feel lucky. i like to watch people come and go in a certain hurry - as if they too could forget the things that really matter. it's impossible though, to take your heart outside of something. it just stands there beating "i see you" "i see you" "i see you."
there was a time when all i could think of was how to be more in love with you. then all that loving made others things to love - so many in fact, that all i could think of was how to be more of myself somehow. now i am just thinking about how to be enough - and kind. and also how it is possible to want something so bad, with everything that you are, and not get it. and still know that somehow it is enough to just be enough and kind.
If i had another life i would choose this one - all messy and ridiculous with the clutter of bones and bills and love. i would walk head-on into the magical mayhem of my teenagers' angst and the moods of marriage - all the time watching my life unravel in both anguish and awe. No one would save me and i would not dawn a cape or make a brilliant name for myself but i would have you quietly snoring next to me, and everything that our laying together made would be brimming over always seeming to bang at the door at every door almost unbearable the fullness the constancy the living of this mad and wonderful life.
it's hard to feel lucky when yesterday's shadow cast its hook into morning and not even sleep could break the silence. i died a thousand deaths even before the graham cracker and chocolate coma took me. there is never enough sweet to fill the hole of your leaving. i believe in rainbows and unicorns and the impossible likelihood that there will be a day very soon upon which we will again fall in love.
sometimes words are bricks i throw at your window when the message of the pebble would have been enough. today the glass frame itself busted out and we were left speaking with nothing between us but spit and dust. it's hard not to laugh when your angriest moment is confronted by hush puppy eyes and every single thing you love. but hold on we must - to our little swords - our bayonets, our rightness. god forbid in the moment we remember what matters.