Changing tides

I see the water meet the sky’s edge 
I expand, here.
I take in what's changed
what's remained.

I remember the moments 
I came to her shore 
seeking something other 
than what was,
seeking answers. 

Today
I come to her 
with a new request. 

Her waves sing 
and I ask for witness
as I recognize 
my own growth. 

I seek her
expanding memory 
so that when I forget
she’ll remind me
 
that tides change 
and so do I. 

In joy

What 
is joy
compared to
a lasting
ache

In joy
I lack the
preoccupation
the restless attachment
the wondering if
my feelings are matched
or returned at all

In joy
all I have
is the way
you leaned in to kiss me

The memory of standing
in the stairwell
you held my gaze
you held me
to share you’re not
seeing anyone else

All I have
are the hands
that didn’t let go of mine
from that first kiss
in the middle of your kitchen

I’m not sure how to write
in joy

But I can try.

Changing of the guards

I pour a glass of wine
light a candle
my work clothes fall to the floor.
I attempt comfort.

It isn't clear yet,
(to me)
how to write in the calm
in the peace.

(what is this soundlessness)

I eat an entire bowl
of popcorn
I watch the sun recede.
I search for words.

It's 11:00 now.
It was so quiet
I almost missed
the
change.

My hands are clammy
my body overheated.
I am sweating.
Is it muggy in here?

(am I searching for a problem)

Shift change.
The new guards
fresh pairs of eyes
I am angry
I ever let the others past.

I look out the doors
its dark
I still have not
put into words
the feeling
of content
awareness.

(hope feels irrelevant)

I'm going to write
a poem about you.

It won't be a poem
of longing
or molding
or pain.

It will be a piece
about you.
And of what is.

My glass
sits half
empty.
The candle
dances.

I thank the changing
of the guards.

(writing of you
makes you real)

living room floor

I kept my winter coat wrapped 
around me
like it would
be ripped
from my body.

Walking into your house,
I could taste the lingering
cigarette smoke.

When silence felt suffocating,
we tried humor.

Finally you asked for
what we both knew
I would not,
perhaps could not,
give.

My feeling of resolve
demanded our attention.
I became aware that this time,
this meeting,
could not be kept afloat
from half of myself
given to you.

I could not offer pieces
and call that love.

In that moment on the
floor of the room
where we both built
and collapsed
it was decided there would
be no last time.

I took responsibility for my
own feelings.
I took my healing seriously.

As if planned,
memories of the last
2 years played before us
in the realization
that I would no longer fit,
these were patterns
I could not sustain.

I remembered the day
you bought this house
and we stained the floor
installed a new rug
that we now baptize
with the remnants of grief.

We opened the door,
gutted the house and
attempted to restore
what we could.

As I went to leave,
I did not look back
in your direction.
I left the key on the kitchen table.

I left us on the living room floor.