07 February 2006

Like I Wish I Was

The migraine was a bad story
I knew when I said Goodbye
You told me I had to pull out
Leave it behind
Leave what
I think you knew
I passed Christmas Day
On your sofa, Grandma
Trying to hide my face
In an afghan you knit
White and blue, with
Holes the size of
Sounds, voices, smells that
Came in anyways, quietly
Beneath the interior shudder of
Bending steel
Whole bridges were collapsing
Inside of me
While you peeled oranges at the sink
And my aunties drank red wine
While the children skated across
Hardwood floors with new toys
I twisted my fingers in the wool
Bracing myself
When we walked to the ocean
Along the busy road
I walked ahead
You walk the beach
Gathering sea glass, lady slipper shells
Looking out across the bay
Not looking back
You told me once that
Love was best an accident
Unfolding on its own
You might have been just as glad
Living with a lot of girls
In the boarding house across the harbor
Bookkeeping at an office in town
My sister is at the edge of the surf
And her shoes getting wet
Her sweater doesn't match
Her hat
Her hair is lost in the wind
She is throwing stones
She is like you, Grandma
Like I wish I was
Looking straight ahead
Happy alone
(HEC - 12/05)

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