It was nice to be back in the Grassroot.
We hadn’t been there in awhile,
not since before Paris
and the cafes, and the little dishes of peanuts.
It was just after five on a Sunday afternoon,
a day of walking the city behind us,
an evening of home cooked curry and a movie ahead of us.
I told you I was sorry for being distracted
and for mistaking other people’s joy for what I wanted.
I told you that I won’t do that anymore. That I will recognize
the good in my own life, the way it arches away from me
and comes back around again, like a sunrise or the way a good poem should.
I promise to not ruin it, to not to squeeze it to tight
demand things from it, shake it so hard in my fist
till it shatters and I cry about all the blood.
I tell you I just get distracted sometimes,
like a goldfish with no memory or a crow with something shiny.
But I mean it and in those times I think that my joy is empty joy
or that maybe I’m doing this whole life all wrong.
I tell you maybe if I had two lives, I could have it all.
You give me a side smile.
“But not anymore. You aren’t going to do that anymore,” you say with a nod.
You lift your drink to your mouth.
“Not any more,” I answer, staring out the door
to the flashing neon lights in the tattoo parlor across the street.
It doesn’t look like April outside. It looks like September.
But then again, those two are the same, aren’t they?
5 hours ago