A faint candle sitting

And did you get what
you wanted from this life, even so?
I did.
And what did you want?
To call myself beloved, to feel myself
beloved on the earth.
-Raymond carver

We were in the living room
sitting apart stilted
with the unsaid and now said,
wondering why and if you got what
you wanted,
Your cyanic eyes seeing clearly
in perfect slicing futures.

And did you get what you wanted?

An expedient thunderstorm
exalted the day just moments before
and the ground and driveway and sidewalk–
my hair, your coat, your lips
were still fresh and damp, cleansed–
hands washed of us.
It cast it’s lighting in memory,
reflecting a lambency of August fields.

And did you get what you wanted?

Reverberations echoed in our tears,
my tears, my heart, our hearts,
trembling the faint candle sitting
on the old wooden coffee table,
weak, fading–illuminating, precious.

And did you get what you wanted?

Unnoticed cars flashed in the windows.
Unnoticed rain pressed against the panes.
Unnoticed wine disappeared with collard words.
Unnoticed sun concealed behind clouds.
Unnoticed hunger drowned in saccharine orbits.

And did you get what you wanted?

Wrap your arms around me and embrace
the tattered breath, bring flowers
to the spring. Fracture the unfinished writing
of silver stars and songs of sheltered meadowlarks
hanging deep and high above us.

And did you get what you wanted?

You loved me sometimes,
and did you get what you wanted?


Ghosts, don’t you mind

The ghosts of mountains, rivers
and owls,
the ghosts of soft blankets
and softer skin,
the ghosts of tenderness, illness,
and loss,
the ghosts of pine and peat, passion and earth,
and other fragrances of you,

the ghosts of four hour drives,
the ghosts of afternoon naps,
lazy jazz Sundays,
and whiskey and wine,
the ghosts of lamentation,

the ghosts of flowers eaten by cats,
the ghosts of movement and grace,
the ghosts of surreptitiousness,
the ghosts of waning light and tears
in your eyes grieve my soul.

These phantoms form
clouds in my sundered sky,
pastel and soft,
whispering and uncertain mementos.
They form knifes
poised above knuckles
of hands reaching for you.
They form shadows of broken glass
shining from within my arms.
They form absence.

Don’t you mind
the ghosts haunting me.
My heart was born with the ghosts of love,
and it will haunt.


If your heart remains

If your eyes light to mine,
what is carried in their gaze
aside from the movement
of the heavens
and the dirt beneath my feet?
Why do they linger,
not on my face, but on
the trees behind us,
and in my loneliest moments?

If your hair blows in wind,
hair I have touched and subsumed,
what of the jealousy of flowers?

If your lips sulk towards me
in rosehip moments,
how can the sun still drift
and rivers still cut and breach their banks?
I could drink the salt of these seconds
to sustain the life around and between us.
Why do they tremble?

If your mind wanders from us,
how do I not cling to petrichor
or the pallor of the moon,
grasping them firmly and tenderly
as one holds a sparrow?

If your heart remains.


Magnificence a Meadowlark

Her second moon rises
humble and steadfast, splendid
in morning rapture,
sure of itself as I am of us.

As children possess the sun,
this moon belongs to her waxing beauty,
the luster of her eyes,
to her softness which tenders ablution.
Her magnificence, a meadowlark.