The guy at McDonald’s doesn’t know… It was a bitch to get moving this morning because a million speckled memories of past mistakes, regrets, sad hours, memories held me to the bed as I tried to wake up.
The guy at McDonald’s doesn’t know… the effort it took to “put on my face” and spike up my hair, searching every kitchen drawer for a smile to wear and looking in each closet to find the twinkle missing from my eyes.
The guy at McDonald’s doesn’t know… I’m swimming around buoys and running down rabbits in the field in my mind most days trying to find the course syllabus for life at 53 after the end of a 20 year marriage & a million lost dreams that danced a jig out the door with the X.
The guy at McDonald’s doesn’t know any of this as he leans out the window awed and thrilled by the sexy black Audi holding a smiling blonde, purse dog riding shotgun, and asks in excited tones:
“Are you the Cool Grandma or the Cool Aunt?” I’m the Cool Grandma I say …. Grateful that the word Cool is still in style.
Most Muses work with me from afar. Fickle illusions sent to stimulate a cranky non-poeting poet. I swore off them. Decided – Enough!
Walked away into the bright light of annihilation and bliss, into that place of Mystics and Wanderers (and that was okay! I was fairly content there in that abyss of emptiness)
And then — you called me, or I stumbled accidentally into You. And You — Lord! More stubborn than I, than any other Muse before You showed up all flash and sparkles and deep-sight serious wise and you can
Sing! Damnit! You woke me up! And so I trudge to the Table of Speaking, pick up the cursed pen, and start saying your name in the silences that come between the wing beats of my heart.
The days come and go
another winter drizzle
I think of mice in the walls
all that scurrying about
and what serious objectives
The days go and come
another year rolls in
I think of poets and lovers
and all the horror movies
I've ever seen
we drink the gore and blood
as if it matters.
comes and goes
I think of you
and wonder how many lives
we've lived, how many times
our paths crossed, the touching
so commonly common
as if dying held no meaning
we take up the dance again.
When they dig into the earth, geologically, the lines and layers speak their trauma. Floods and fires, apocalyptic damage showing itself in the thickness, debris, lean lines and layers of scarred soil.
My grandfather taught me about the rings on trees, the drought years and hard fought survival ines showing in the width of the ring. Natural growth stunted, thinner. This carrying within its core, growth circles of pain and plenty.
I wonder at the trauma rings of humans — slice me open in some way, split my center, dig down the half of me in layers — The hours of grief, the days of joy. How deep each layer or how thin?
Slice me open, split my center study me as the land or tree, point the place of catastrophic growth — line, ring, width, depth, expanding into the archaeology of being human.
We are a million hours of time
away from the boy who wrote
poems and drew pictures --
and the girl so excited to read them,
to know him, to love him.
Those children lost in the fogs
of doing adulthood --
The Serious Business of Living --
That Delusion --
Teaching them to hide away
in the dark shadows -- alone.
Grief is a selfish master.
His remembering what is lost
always living that past image.
The dearness of it roots the tears,
forces the chest to grow upward
in swelling pain.
We grieve the possibility
that died. The honesty we forsook.
We grieve what could have been
if we were other than we are.
We grieve the hours spent believing
we could be anything and everything
to each other -- those doors
always closing in silence, the noise
of our breaking heart the only sound
left echoing through the room.