one way ticket

i stood there at that bus stop

on the hill,

waiting:

book in hand,

reading about the galapagos islands

and a sailor turned poet

who almost crashed into them.

next to me a tree bloomed into a fence;

i didn’t know its name.

i stood there at that crossroads,

wanting:

a purpose,

a heading,

a sign,

a job.

it feels so long ago now.

but i felt the most alive then:

deep in that despair—with an edge of hope.

i knew somehow it would all work out.

i knew we would be ok.

but the desperation sharpened something in me

that will never be the same.

 

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alive: for dad

i keep trying to crawl into that photograph

of you in your uniform, of you in your

 

youth-prime, proud smiling on your mother’s

arm with the crinkly eyes of your future daughters.

 

after the flagship burned,

and the wheelhouse turned,

 

you became good at seeing angels;

yeah, you were all right.

 

when asked how you were doing,

you said, well, i’m alive.

 

and my mirror cells replied,

well, that’s every thing.

Dad and Grandma