Thursday, December 16, 2021

How to be the Other's Servant

Abraham looking at the stars and worrying about sheep.

Gods who leave and do not return.

An owl cries and I remember that week in Vermont reading John Haines, wanting to like him better than I did, and realizing there was something to learn in the dislike and wanting, and learning it. 

At night I walk through snow to the river past the horses so later I can write "at night I walk through snow to the river past the horses."

Ma's mother just wanted to be happy and forty years later a little boy had to figure out how to live in a dark basement and I have not really slept since 1987 when the dreams began. 

Mandolin notes floating through summer evenings, love letters a grandson finds tucked into the family bible, and death sentences, always death sentences.

The second solo in Comfortably Numb.

In a dream, John the Baptist laughs at me trying to remember everything lest it all happen all over again, saying "Sean, it's all always happening, that's what he couldn't see, throwing his body against a wheel that's never not grinding." 

Jason interrupts to ask me to stop using the word "demon" and then says quietly, "yeah, sorry, I know."

Let us learn again how to be the other's servant.

Remember sex in the fallout shelter her Dad built?   

I remember coming home from painting houses and getting high in a little apartment in Burlington, listening to Dylan and watching fish swim back and forth in tanks both real and imagined.

Each breath a continent as she presses me inside her, gently rocking, the heat of her something electric from high up in the cosmos saying "yes - there - there." 

Nobody scares you like you scare you!

A light goes out of her eyes and I know what happens next and still I stay, saying is there anything else I can do.

Leaning my head against the barn pissing, rain falling on the back of my neck, forwarding an old family story. 

Advent candles leaning in the wreath I made with Fionnghuala.

White chocolate.

Learning early what a photograph could do to me, against which words were a poor army, but going to war anyway, wanting only to live and to stop what it seemed like always had to happen next. 

This anger, it has no gender. 

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