Thursday, May 28, 2020

Lovers and Walkers Entranced by Starlight

The deluge, in which I break yet another vow. But who gives a damn, the world the way it is, the dream getting creaky and stiff. Somewhere an old man can't pick apples anymore, somewhere an old woman puts her knitting away forever. Ladders in the barn gather dust, chickens nestle against late Spring cold. I remember hay rides growing up, by which I mean riding to and from the fields in the back of pickups littered with hay, not knowing what we did was work. And later yet the clumsy but sincere gropes and kisses on sleeping bags spread over the bed, all under starlight, Tom Petty cassettes looping in the cab, soft clicks repeating at intervals, her nipple stiffening against my palm. What are we but lovers and walkers entranced with starlight, beholden to the moon? Oh tell me a story, one that doesn't end with the witch dead and the little boy still lost. At night I dream of shad, their thick shadows blurring the Connecticut, and the men of my childhood who were so skilled at slicing them up. I'll die someday but before that I'll forget myself in your arms - will that be okay? Mid-afternoon, instant coffee, coming up from the horses to yet another poem. Here's a new vow: no more dead shad, and no more sad stories. Tomorrow morning I'm going to drive all night, rest my head on your beautiful lap, and cry myself to sleep.

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