A night, cold in February, ghosts on my breath,
the silent fear, little fevers that come now
because no one can comfort you.
I cannot touch your face, or wipe away tears,
or raise the dead or even bring down the
Wrath of God. “Broken Arrow!”
Is love honey in Elysium, giving a sweet taste,
as the eternal sun dries the blood, heals pain?
Does it’s taste tell you, you are remembered?
No tracks in the snow, but you walked on air.
What turn into the cold snow, moonlight, was taken?
Lilies lain on your head would let you Assume.
Percival I want to be, to give that Holy Water
to your thirsty lips, and restore your aqua eyes
and that laughter, that can put the pieces back.
The haunters follow us, ever after they claim us.
Maybe that flaming sword could slay them,
but you never had it put into your hand, despite holiness.
I play these strings, hoping to make the notes
your laughter so they will love you too, and forever.
Love you as I have always loved you.
I play these strings, to remember, sunlight warming
your skin and the days in childhood paradises and
feel the radiating warmth again, of a perfect summer.
I play these strings, to resurrect you, so you can follow me
from the underworld or a cell, or a lonely grave, bring you home.
But to play these strings I must look back. Always look back.
Kristen sits on the bed, only in her briefs, smoking a French cigarette.
The sunrise is weak and watery; it makes her skin marble pale, distant.
The freight train rumbles by, it’s horn the howl of an enraged demon.
She is enraged and numb and distant, only that same demon can hear her howl.
Coffee with her before I go to work, before she leaves for Rochester, gone forever.
She is in her old and stiff leathers, holding her scratched helmet, already gone inside.
There’s nothing holding her here now, and a shared past now ruined pushing her away.
I love her, but she only came for a bed, and someone to hold the sky up a little longer.
I watch her put on her helmet, fire up her motorbike, and speed away, leaving for good.
I watch until she’s out of sight, knowing I didn’t make her go, but I couldn’t make her stay.
The living room/bedroom/den still smells of her exotic cigarettes, homemade, lilac perfume.
I walk to work on campus, heart aching, and hoping she finds peace up in the northern dark.