Friday, May 20

poetry #7 - when it counts (for Kate and Trav)

(one of the joys of being a poor (but not starving) wannabe artist is that you never have to shop for gifts. instead, one makes one's gifts (mostly). for Kate and Trav I had some prints made of pictures I took and bought a couple sale frames. and wrote a poem...)

did it hurt
that first time in the moment after the pregnant silence     somewhere      paused
in time
was there a sharp pain     did it feel like losing something precious
letting go in an irreversible way that meant one thing would never come back
and another would never leave
was there a moment of acute precise
like losing a tooth 
or autonomy        
or yourself
like you were splitting open in the most complete and wonderful ways
was it a surrender to you
a loss     of     you

or was it     like me     
for me     to be clear     it didn’t hurt at all
it was dawn over the ocean the universe giving birth to a star an eagle falling out of the nest into 
that first time
a warm summer moon or the harsh cold light of a winter sun or a blanket of watching stars
or the covers     maybe     in the hush     after
it was a perfect nova a kissed orchid opening the first smile of the child   
we’ll have one day

it was that easy that free that sharp that utterly complete     
that perfect
and there was no pain no matter how completely i was torn apart
and remade

there have been times     of course     since
when it hurt     
there always are 
to say it to feel it to fear that it might
just as there will be again
when life pins us down shoves us against the wall kneels on our heads pressing us into the hard 
     concrete of reality
and then     in those moments     
saying it feeling it meaning it
has/will hurt has/will come with a cost has/will bleed has/will weep tears that burn
that’s life     we know this     that’s the way it is must cant not be

but when those times
knock down our door invade through the patio window crash in like a thief
i’ll remember     
as you have and will
there will be reminders remembrances tattoos carved deeper than skin into our hearts of that first 
and all the others since
when it didn’t hurt at all when we didn’t even notice when it was
running into the surf escaping the confines of walls and ceilings to dance on rooftops in the summer 
when it was these things because
it was/is real was/is pure was/is hot as a newborn star and cool as a perfect breeze
as forever as the universe and its birthing and killing of suns
as clean as our future child’s first word first step first smile first hug first love

that’s the promise
no matter the cost the hurt the fear the hate the shock
the weighty enormity of what it all might mean
when it counts most
i’ll/you’ll say and mean and feel and know and own the words