Tuesday, May 2, 2017

First questions

To be ready 
to love you
there are questions we first 
must answer. 
For example:
If one of us is sleepless--like I am now--
Would the other lie down too 
and tell stories, 
the number of sighs between breaths--
like the poet and his wife.* 
Will we say, "I'm right here"

when the other asks in uneasy 
slumber, "Will you stay."

*Li-Young Lee

Sad questions


How many days has it been 
Since you last wrote a poem? 
Only a day? 
Such a long day it was. 

You were busy
displacing water with your body
to measure the weight of silence 
across time. 
It was difficult. With each wave
the body moves 
and gravity disperses,
water spills and you had to do it again, 
like a sad question 
repeating itself. 

For example: 
If you miss someone 
long enough 
hard enough,
would they know? 
Could they feel it
sitting heavy on their heart,
refusing what is told
 it must accept
except you 
don't matter. 
Could they know? 

But then, why would you need them to know? 
They did not know when autumn came to these parts and leaves burned bright for days without you seeing. 

They did not know how much
you wanted to break the face of serenity walking around that lake 
stepping on grass you love,
stepping on paths you want 
to lay down on,
stepping on stones you want 
in your pockets. 
You wanted to break the smiles that must have happened.
The hands that must have pretended to need warmth. 
Tear the hair that must have turned gold in the sunset. 
Your sunset. 

Did they know?