I keep missing, missing a call and hearing that twenty-minutes
-ago voice talking to my twenty-minutes-ago self, who was at
that time someone different.  I think of Mrs. Dalloway and all
the ones I don’t say “wait” to, the ones I let go back inside with
a faint “bye” with a faint heart watch the door close.  What is the
conversation we would have had, the secrets we would have
told about the thoughts caged in our brains about that moment
you realized this morning or the person I spoke to last night?  I
let my friend go on up the stairs and that is like a train running
on tracks because I don’t have courage, anymore, I don’t know
where it’s gone to.  I let my brother keep his eyes closed on the
couch because there’s only this slightest of slight beach fences
held together by strands of wire and I don’t know where the
courage went, where it lives now.  You were talking about all
the compassion last night and my heart was like something
heavy in something flimsy.  You said my name to my voice-
mail and I went onto the porch and the amount of the world
that was not saying my name was the entire amount of the world.
I want these small planes to leave my room like the song says.
But I keep writing and rescinding, almost saying and then not
saying, and I want to know what will save my life this time.

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