April 12, 2009

On My Sadness

It's come to this. There were lines drawn in desert sand. Cacti refereed. There was an austerity through which a wind whistled. You know the whistle: guns are about to be drawn.

But I won't defend myself.

I am sometimes possessed of a sadness. Nothing, it seems, will draw it out. It's grown roots. (It wants "to live a life backwards.") I do what I should: I machete it down, keep it manageable, throw metaphors around it like a balm. It retreats, becomes invisible, but I know it hasn't died.

Sometimes I look at your photograph and the familiar feeling blooms in me.

Sometimes I think that blooming is the way flowers force us to notice the rot on the petals, the cuts in the stems from careless passersby.

You were a passerby I let stay too long. I opened when I should have shut. I metaphored when I should have chilled to my seeds. I mulched when I should have pesticided.

In the summer, I'll see the desert. I'll see lightning and thunderstorms miles off in the forever-stretching sky. It won't be the streets I walked with you, hand in hand, and it won't be the car we drove in, singing songs. It will be new. I'll be prepared, then. The answers, like heartbreak, will come.

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