Archive for October, 2010

Universal languages.


Amazing how no matter how meager,

no matter how grand,

time swallows all.

It’s as chilling as it is comforting.

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Restless as the cold hits.

What do you do when winter begins? I think, stepping out of the movie, finally colder outside than it is in the theater.

And I think it again, the first time I see you in one of your scarves.

I can’t get enough of this seltzer, I think, as I bring the cold to my lips again, out on the park bench.

Outside the grocery store, I should get some more.

Knowing full well that damn seltzer is going to freeze me from the inside as I’m frozen from out.

Do we stop eating salads?

Do we go to bed earlier?

Get to listen to the crickets less?

Do we stop drinking spritzer?

Or simply pack away our shorts?

Do the mornings last longer? Do we linger more? Do we avoid the cold with each other’s arms? With an extra long cup of tea? Do you make soup or take time to watch the first freeze take its grasp? Do we actually read by the fire as we reminisce about sweating through the hot summer nights, though I’m never really sure if we’ve ever lit a fire and pulled out books.

What do we do when winter begins? I finally ask you.

And you shrug, and then say something about the new paper towels or the luggage you’re supposed to buy, and even with that, I’m thinking of the next thing I’ll do right after I finish this sentence.


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Early Morning Light : Bed

Wait… Why can’t we just do this all day?

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Just Fall.

When it rains, I always picture the tree above the roof falling on the house. It doesn’t even need to be raining, really. I made my roommate switch rooms so it would be his bed crushed under the largest branch. He didn’t mind, slightly larger room, and when he shrugged and said okay, I wondered just how many quirks he’d put up with. I already had my bed on stilts because the plumbing was too noisy, but I may have been making that up, or how I liked to sleep with my door slightly open because closed doors, I told him, I felt were too exclusive. Again, he shrugged, and now has to make his morning coffee quietly as to not wake me.

He did like that I supplied to furniture and sometimes had a friend or two over he could hit on. And he would, theatrically so, often his arm around one, winking at another. THe right blend of insecurity and shelteredness was bound to fall. Watching him tell the same made up story about running with the bulls in Spain, his fashion sneakers still a brilliant red, I get reminded something my first girlfriend’s mother said the first time I came over. We were sixteen and I had just taken my driving test. We had dinner and talked about school or intramurals or jazz choir. Right as I left, right at the front door was closed behind me, I hear the mother say, “I’ll never understand why the prettiest girls always date the ugliest boys.”

I’m never exactly sure what my roommate does to make me think of that.

Maddie always saw through my roommate though. Maddie walked in beauty, was that Byron? She wasn’t beautiful, no, she was walked in it. She’d always bring fresh flowers and her wrap around skirts always fit impeccably well.

Maddie came over with scones she made and my roommate tried all his usual tricks which were met with Maddie’s uh-huhs and occasionally an unenthusiastic oh really? Wow… I liked watching her combat him.

I remember scurrying home in the rain, staring up at the tree above the house, stepping inside and having him ask me for Maddie’s number, or even her e-mail would do, he told me. I gave it, thinking her reaction to his pursuit would be entertaining if nothing else.

And then a week later, seeing her fight off tears in our kitchen after I saw her use his toothbrush the night before.

Willing it to rain, or else I’d cut that damn branch down myself.

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Snow to Summer

Someone once said that snow was the only thing that softened the city’s edges.

I remember that first snow day:

The library covered, the post office, a barely recognizable mound.

The trains quietly stopped and everything else lost behind noiseless powdering.

I was fine listening to the news, and you to your old Billie Holiday CD.

She sang about summer heat at some music festival.

Soon I’d make a pot of tea, and later put on boots, create walkways for the neighborhood dogs.

And while I shoveled, I’d catch a thought, my feet freezing through,

and I’d drift with each flake, up, away, spiraling.

The thought: you, last summer, talking about flying away, balloons tied around your arms and neck,

Just waiting for lift off, you said.

Just as now, on the porch, the sun basking my bare feet, I go to snow.

Schedulessness breeds schedulessness.

I’ll keep these caught moments and always drift, up, away, spiraling.

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