Special (full moon)

My father 
has always looked
through a wide frame 
lens

He sees 
the flaws and
the work 
wrapped delicately
in regrets and pride

He watches
as the sun rises and falls
from the center of my
chest

He sees ocean waves
in the irises
of the eyes he
passed to me 

(he takes me driving
to see the super moon
in the fall)

there is no facade
or performance 
with and for
him

He sees it all
and offers no
wavering, conditional 
affection.

“If anything happened to you,
my world would shatter.”

My father gave me
the experience of
feeling precious.

My father taught me
attachment.

and as I grew 
and moved,
I looked back to witness 
the ways and times
I’ve loved and 
been loved

and despite the depth
and authenticity,
nothing stuck
or lasted longer
then what was enough.

And here I am again
at the precipice of 
a new moon,
a waxing
crescent 

a love that is
tangible
yet fragile

but to him,
it comes and goes
and he fears 
its illusive state

and i fear its
capacity to crumble -

it isn't consistent yet
he isn't consistent, 
yet. Maybe 
I'm not, either.

This process
and indecision
changes the ways
I feel held.

I don't feel special.

Not in his eyes,
yet. 

I don’t want
the waning and waxing
with anything related
to the love he has to offer.

Give me
the wide lens frame,
the sunrise and sunset,
the ocean waves.

Synchronize
with your head 
and heart.

give me the full moon
or nothing at all.

picture

I walked the stairs 
to your place

using the key
i let myself
in

like nothing 
had changed.

I dropped some 
things off
in what feels like
a final exchange

I walked through the 
rooms and 
saw the picture of us
taken off the wall

A part of me knew 
that would happen,
eventually

and I'm not sure 
how I would have
felt if you'd 
left it hanging 

I moved to your
cupboard
noticed a card
I had given you
7 months in 

I read the promise
I  made 

that at the time you
could not return

I turned around
and noticed
the picture of us 
on the floor. 

The same floor
that held us
the night we ended

It feels more final, now
solidified here in this 
image on the floor
and the empty wall

I now know
that my first time
in Amsterdam with you
will be my last

the picture is the 
last piece of the 
puzzle that we
never finished
because I
didn't have all 
of the pieces

and neither did you -

at least, not ones
that fit my own

but we tried.
I know we did.

Those two 
people in that picture
did their best
and grew apart
loved deeply
and tried again

I hope you take the 
picture off the floor,
store it in a place
where one day you can
look back and smile
and know that on 
that balcony

we laughed
we had hope

we loved. 


Light change

I don’t know 
if it’s from
feeling lightheaded
or grief’s release

But everything
looks different,
now.

“Should I come to you?”

He asks, concerned.

“Not tonight,”

I reassure.

Tonight
I’ll
sleep with his
poems.

Tonight,
I mourn.

Fireworks

I wanted to 
write
in biting
verse

Asking about
your party
and my friends
in attendance

I’d make some
metaphor about
Independence Day

I wanted to
lash out
and ask
how the space
felt as you
hosted.

I’m still angry -

I’m still grateful.

I’m not going
to maneuver my
schedule around
your’s, anymore.

And I won’t
reach for you
in drunken texts
or in venomous
poems.

In the end
all it is
is missing you
and us
and the summer
before

And if I can’t
let go
I hope you can.

I hope you find
better

I hope it’s
more than
fireworks.

Oh,
didn’t I tell you?

I repel
the explosions
and the smoke

Sometimes
I hate them.

The empty sky
and hidden stars
once the show
ends.

But you’re
not them
and you’re
no performance

You’re sun
in February
and lightning
in June.

You are joy.

“How was your party?”

I’ll ask, pointedly.

“Did you see fireworks?”

And if you ask if I
saw them, too,
I’ll nod and smile
in the same
restrained way
you smile at me, now.

“Sure, I saw them,”

knowing damn well
I didn’t even look.

settle

next to the rubble
sits a leaf blower 
some supplies, 
unfinished wood

I reach for the tools
but do not know where 
to start

i pick the 
most destructive
and hear its force
as I watch the
sawdust fly 

this construction zone
was never intended 
for remodeling
or renovation

it needed 
demolished.

Now i watch,
holding too many
tools to carry
and a machine I have
no business operating

I set it down 
the engine still
running on high

I walk away.

I have to 
let the dust settle.

Overused

It’s the pendulum,
swinging one way
and returns again

Back and forth
gravity keeps its
repeating patterns
oscillating between
doubt and knowing

Kinetic to potential
and back again
until gravity wins

I’m the one receiving
the force
I’m the one asking
for change
and staying the same

Tensions
decide how long
this period
will last.

Swing me,
I want to say.

Do what you
must and do it
until the stillness
feels so empty
I have to
do it again.

Is the metaphor
correct?

Maybe it’s me at the ends
and not in the middle

Maybe I’m both.

fly

when the words 
evade
or i lose myself
in the detailed tangles
of the other's
webs

i often wonder
if it's enough
to witness

if it can satisfy
to say,

“I am here.”

I ask them to feel it all
and often
do not have the
the strings to
weave a foundation
that takes away
the pain

(I want to catch them)

Is this the illusion?

As I listen, speechless,
it may look
like they're falling

Do you see it now?

It's clear, now
when doubt
transfigures
to an almost
ancient knowing

It isn’t a net
that’s needed

but wings

Split

“Stay present,” 

He advises.

Lovingly;
Selflessly

“I don’t want
you split between
two places.”

I want to laugh

You see,
you’ve been with
me, in the
mountains of
West Virginia.

Along the shores
of the
Great Lakes.

I saw you in
the mouth of
Mammoth Cave.

When the fireworks
reflected in
the D.C. waters.

I haven’t left
your hometown
in weeks.

“I’ll do my best,”

I assure him.

I’ve been trying
to untangle my
feet
wrestle them into
one place

For over a year.

Overflow

The universe
must laugh
with twisted
knowing

It should have come
as no surprise -

this was built
on bricks of pain
amongst fleeting moments
of Hope.

Existing always
was a desire -
A sort of
understanding
that I would
be here, grow here,
once I stood
on solid ground.

I held out my hands;

“I’m ready,”

I promised.

She smiles
visualizing a
story

I see it
in greys and blues
and know not
how it ends.

As I watch,
my arms become
so full I
lose my balance.

Faltering, I
look to the shore
and ask for guidance.

“You asked,”

She smiles.

“And so you received.”

spotlight

the scene was 
static

and as you approached
the only light left
was (on) you

“You’re the dancer,”

he introduced, smiling.

“Yes,”

I managed.

I look back
at that moment, frozen.
It melts as
the light transforms 
into a spotlight 

Make music,
I want to say to you.

watch me dance
for you.