Dear Departure,

My world doesn’t make as much sense without you in it, like I’ve been left to finish a game without knowing the rules. Death is so many things, but mostly it feels unfair and impossible. A reality in which you don’t exist to love us as fiercely as you did, doesn’t feel like reality at all. There was so much more for you to show me, wisdom you so readily imparted on me throughout my life. You have left me to navigate the winding unchartered paths alone – without the light of your wisdom.  All of our worlds were being held together with bricks you laid so carefully, gently, with purpose and love. These walls are quickly crumbling and I don’t know how to get a grasp on a proper adhesive to hold them up.

You would know. You could have told me.

You’ve taken a piece of my heart with you. It beats differently now in the absence of your voice, your warmth, your embrace. I just wish you’d known it was already yours – because you loved me, because you loved others who loved me. Your love transcends and transfers from one life to the next. I want so desperately to be present with you, sipping coffee on your porch looking out across the California or Texas sky.  One last bear hug or cup of coffee or kiss in my ear. I wish to feel your love wash over me again for even a moment, knowing full well it would never be enough.

What will I do when your footprints wash away and scent fades from your sweaters? For now my sleep is stalked by vivid dreams of you and me together again, as if you had never left my side; the memory of you bursting with all the colors I always saw you in. I will hold onto the memory I’ve constructed of you in my mind, for as long as I can, because it’s all that I have. But when the day comes, when the vibrancy of you has drifted and the imprint fades – well, I dread that day with all the heart that I have left.

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Hands

The rain is all but drizzling through me

in the same way your thoughts course

from your lips to my palms

 

 

The After

Someday –

I will find you here, in the place where
you now stay and will remain forever.

The after, and the before.
the accessible and the invisible.
You appear to me
and I am reminded that you
are a figment of my heart
willing your presence to be
as tangible as you always were.

This is the after.
I’ve yet to become acquainted with it,
still feeling the vacancy
of the before.
The place I can never again visit.
I will not find you there
no matter how desperately I long to.

I would like to stay awhile in
the memory of you.
So that I might take with me
all we once were able to see
in that place.
You’re here now,
but I think I choose not to see you.

My heart breaks a thousand times
in just one moment spent
here – in the after.
You have moved on.
I am struggling to join you.
You have departed this world,
and yet it is me who feels like a ghost
unable to embrace
the reality
of a life that goes on
after you.

To Know You

Your eyes sweep impatiently
across my face,
as if you are searching
for me in my features –
hoping that the curve
of my cheek will open a
door into the past, telling
of pain I have endured.
The pink in my lips may
betray me, showing you
all the words I dare not
speak, but wish to hear
out loud. Studying shadows
that linger beneath my
eyes – eyes that are
staring straight back to
you, working tirelessly to
not be found out, by a
swift blink or downward
glance.
I feel you not speaking –
fearful, perhaps, of
missing a moment when
the light may fall upon
my lashes, communicating
all the ways the world
has left them damp or
rubbed raw.
I do not ask you what
you are thinking
I too am searching –
waiting. For any sign
that you want me to
know you,
the way you are endeavoring
to know me.
Faces turned inward,
cascades of silence
flow through gazes
speaking volumes of love;
deafeningly loud and impossibly
clear.

Snowflakes

My intentions
land softly upon
the top of your head –
like freshly fallen
snow, on a dark
December night.

They are for you.
Reach out your
palm and
catch them
before they melt away

like snowflakes,
each with a
unique identity
melting on the tip
of your nose.

Can you hear what
the cold air is saying?
Whispers, sharing
secrets carried down
from clouds we cannot
see.

Listen.

Spoken Melody

I want to take your words
and spin them into
something sublime.
A kind of art that is
so breathtaking
the tourists who walk by
will have to look away.
Music more transcendent
than your favorite song
or mine.
Your words.
They sit on the edge
of my memory,
always so close to falling
away
from me.
If I don’t make them
into something I can hold,
I fear there will never
again be art or music
worth experiencing.
Oh –
those words of yours.
Even the words that don’t
belong to you
the words of others
whom you admire or despise,
coming from your mouth
they’re all exquisite to me.
To my ears as they fall
from your lips
to my eyes as your teeth
and tongue work together,
making everything else I
have ever thought beautiful
completely insignificant
in comparison.