Early morning bright half-moon backing into
the gap between Jupiter and Saturn.
Everything bright or dark, everything
etched by stark contrast.
The waning moon faces backwards and I expect
more gray and yellow in the night.
Waking and waiting to go back to sleep, instead
take a half-blind turn around the house.
Moonlight pours from south-facing windows,
drapes trapezoids of colorless light, reshapes
random furniture, walls, countertops, appliances.
Constellations of electronics status lights cluster
from shelves and desks. Cold navigational signs
that pepper the night, that I barely know how to read.
I pretend I don’t know how all this will end, how its final line will fall. Not
so much “story,” but a closure of sentiment, gesture to an imagined reader.
(Read: “me,” right.) I have always nursed a dislike of narrative in poems,
like I’ve always resisted knowing where my life was going. The end is in
the beginning & then I go on, sure. And despite me, my life has gone on.
And despite my petulance I, like a poem, create my own end. I’m spewing
“I”s again and again from my worry, pretending I’m not afraid I have somehow
already drafted an end. Now: Breathed the wrong air, touched the wrong
package. Does some figurative reader have an eyebrow cocked with
dramatic irony at my meantime dithering? Meantime: the chemical reaction
between angst and suspicion is a slow burn, I think, anger that I trust I can
wrestle down and subdue daily. But it can’t work forever. Watching a TV drama
I was desperately jealous of a character with a punching bag in his apartment.
Fuck the future, thwap. Fuck endings, I want to punch my finale, knock out my end.
Someone standing for someone else in a dream. (I admit I have
a bias against people talking about dreams, for the most part.)
My morning often starts these days waking to bird song in gray darkness,
maybe having to get up and trudge carefully to the bathroom
only to find myself awake after and staring toward a vague
out of focus ceiling once I drag myself back to bed.
In the dream all my belongings seem to have stood for someone
so I felt great anxiety about having lost things while traveling.
That’s all I can remember. That, and I’m in a car with empty luggage.
In bed I start to warm up under the covers, feel the suffusion
that maybe means I can get back to sleep. There was more
to the dream, of course; hell, there’s more to everything.
Every lost moment fractures into a million lost possibilities,
every bird’s flown off into the crepuscular morning, and gone.