Living

When I wrote about death
I was open–like skin touching

sky, rising off my bones.
Every breeze carried reaction.

Every voice sat in my ear like a bird,
perching in an open window.

And I was flight.
I was elemental and terrified

at words, at silence.
I suddenly was.

Everything appeared as an
old photograph, black and

dusty white…somehow holding
more ethereal ancient meaning.

A face on the street.
My hands resting on my lap.
The way his legs tangle in bed.

I was touching nothingness
and entering life in the shape

of a poem.

When I wrote about death,
my breath hung heavy in the air

like my mouth was baking sentences
on a feverish summer day.

And then, breath would rise, as though
it forgot its own febrile weight.

The defect in my heart valve
would stutter and stop

at a new definition of dying
or an understanding of words

creating an immaterial experience.
And slowly, then, it would begin

to beat regularly once again.
Like a stop watch not knowing

the moment when it will finally
make its last click.

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Categories: Poetry

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