she said it herself, leaning in.
imagine the most endearing poem you’ll ever receive.
this wants to be exactly like that. like being found
just when you were certain of being far and lost.
imagine that. I am.
what if we cautioned you this poem might leap off the page?
would you add extra milk and eggs to your grocery list?
what if we left this middle intentionally blank?
will you grant this grace?
will you understand?
will you sympathize, conspire with us?
just go along for the ride?
forget what you were doing here anyway?
perhaps this really is your poem after all
and you’re just a flinch away from everything
coming back beyond slight of hand.
soon you’ll be asking for your favorite pen,
asking for your old writing hat.
close your eyes. go ahead, begin to write.
this ink might become invisible any moment now!
what if it rained and your umbrella was out of town?
would you remember you came from the sea?
close your eyes. taste summer salt.
close your eyes. write my face.
reprise: originally published 23 July 2011 in a slightly different format and text. there’s also some comment conversation about how poems breathe.
some things aren’t done just ’cause we think they are. this one wanted to raise its hand again. who am I to be saying no.
my thanks to Margo, Irene, Elizabeth.
what else? I was going to use this image one more time, something more of past and present I feel, but then, maybe that would be too much bread on the table. so now. this here, instead.
this ceramic face mask was one of many by a French artist, exceptional. I gave coin for this, very many years ago, in a climate far more temperate than now & here. it is to me, life-size, life-like. I like the theme, the notion of emerging, but it is more personal than merely art. in those days of loneliness, this face was maybe a friend, or could be, and near enough to be close to me. imagine a lover. I could. as near as one kiss. so it does not merely hang on my wall, it hangs inside my heart. would that I could write a poem to be such a friend to you. then some resonate voice over my shoulder might lean in and whisper, well done my son. I would be home again.
imagine this is a poem just like that.