—AceBot on what-would-i-say.com

The end of the year means now I begin
more recent stories, saying “This was back in X.”
Perception of distance through the fabric-
cation of time. I’m standing in January like it’s an airport,
glancing over my shoulder for home,
which I can’t see, although it remained when I left it.
This time last year, I had a novel freshly minted &
girlfriend on suicide watch because her meds stopped working.
Pluses & minuses. I’m a poet again,
writing my history as if a castle I might explore
then leave to walk through bare gardens &
labyrinths of gray-dead oaks. Remember
last year when it was 70 degrees &
camellias pursed their candy-apple lips
in a world gone odd, in a culture of anger &
unanticipated violence? So long ago.
This month is about snow-blindness & Irish sweaters.
What seemed chaos has become routine
in the same way a prisoner, after years of confinement,
lives each day without noticing bars on the windows
of his cell. But that was further back than X for me, &
I’ve said enough about it. Let me focus
on my present past: fear of upcoming journeys
already caught in photographs, a few successes
raced beyond like mile markers, the words It will be okay
spoken too many times for comfort.
How did anyone survive it? Here we are.


Photo used under CC.