Tuesday, March 18, 2014


(image credit here)

Our love is spelled out on the cracks in the pavements
and the dirt caked into your fingernails and your once fair skin
now illuminated by neon-light signboards and faint lighter glows
and the cigarette fires screened by the hazy clouds of smoke
pumped out by blackened lungs and nicotine-stained gums
and curling into spirals around your fingers laden with cheap imitation rings
to hide the patch of whiter skin on the fourth finger of your left hand
like a scar, now clutching a fistful of empty, polluted air
as everyone else goes home to their partners or families or
imaginary happy relationships or procrastinated papers
and you order another drink, a tall glass of your own
choice of poison and watch the stream of people reduce
to a trickle, looking around hopefully for another soul as lonely as yours
But like as many nights, you fail yet again
with nobody but the bartender to bother
Who every night wears invisible headphones of indifference
and slaps on a fake smile of concern
for vagrant misfits that assault him, not with broken bottles and glasses
and spilled alcohol, but with the deepest pits of human consciousness
awakened by spirits and the hidden need to be heard and understood
And you, the you I now barely recognize, were the bar's regular,
the girl with the reserved bar stool of sorrow and shame
Drowning your tears in liquid numbness, the alcohol dulling the pain
of unreturnable yesterdays, regretful todays, and lost tomorrows
As you retell the story of the day you never wanted to remember
you look up and around and realize you were alone, more than ever
The bartender was clearing your glass, wiping the tears and drool
you left on the table, and tell you, not too unkindly, that it was closing time
And you reach for your wallet, groping at crumpled bills
and finding the last love note I wrote you
before stumbling out of the bar and the bartender lets slip 
the fake understanding to give way to real sympathy
And you stumble out of the cab that takes you home,
kick off your shoes, and fall face first onto the bed
You let the sobs begin, shaking your whole body
from every tangled hair on your beautiful head, to the toes that curl up involuntarily
against the raw truth of it all, all that has happened and all you have refused to accept
As you fall asleep again this way, your body is a lonely apostrophe
in a bed that was too big when you shared it with someone before
I long to wipe away the tears still falling from your closed eyes
from the happy dreams you are having
of the two of us together


But I could only make the breeze blow softer on your face
Jealous that it could touch your skin, ruffle your hair the color of baby corn
in the first hours of the morning, while I sit here
Denser than air but less solid than water
Cradling your head in my arms
Holding you, but not holding you
Always in the void, the in-between
Of nothingness, and almost-somethingness

Our love is spelled out on the cracks on the pavement
Broken, unfinished roads to once familiar
now unknown destinations
Of what was once whole and known
into fragments of what we've built

Our love was spelled out on the cracks on the pavement
was my last conscious thought
as my life's essence flows away
Filling in the cracks in the concrete
but cutting unhealing wounds
into your heart
and mine

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