A tiny poem
about an arrow
that hits a heart
and tears it apart.
A tiny poem
about an arrow
that hits a heart
and tears it apart.
I look around and I see nothing. My eyes have forgotten their old friendship with the night, and its darkness has become impenetrable to sight. I wonder if that’s how you’ve disarmed me. Unable to see what lies hidden in your darkness, I can only read you from your best sides, always shining in the morning sun. So I shut my critical eye and believe even your impossible face to be real. And I shut my critical mind and believe even broken hearts can heal. And I feel. I close my eyes and feel the night lift me and envelop me in its hidden hands until I’m once more just a part of it all, and I don’t have to see you to know that you’re here. I just have to feel. I just have to believe in make-believe.
My body is a big ball of unrest and not even the trees can calm me. I try to imagine them with their long fingers stretching up into the air, reaching for empty space. But my imagination cuts them off before they reach anything other than the feeling of longing. My imagination is always too concerned with reality, when I wish for the unreal possibilities that lie beyond these acres. I draw mystical eyes because I feel as if you’re seeing through my fair skin and straight into my dark soul, as if every blink from your eyes is a shot with a loaded gun, tearing through my respectable appearance to drain my sinful blood. And I would hide behind the trees, but they have been cut down by now. And I would hide on different islands, but all my bridges have been burnt. And I would scream. And I would rage. And I would run like the wind and my footsteps would spread like wildfire. But there’s no sound. There’s no emotion. There’s no wind and there’s no oxygen here. There’s just your eye on me, and me suffocating in my own web of lies.
I don’t blame you for getting lost, even when you left me stranded here with nothing on but three ounces of courage, the ever-growing weight on my shoulders and a splash of tears accentuating my cheekbones. I know it’s hard to find your way through these lands, and the neon signs glow much too bright at night when they try to corrupt your soul. Drink this. Watch this. FEEL this. So I don’t blame you, ’cause when you look at them, they drag you in and spit you out, and when you manage to look away, you wander hopelessly in the dark.
Sometimes I get lost as well. Sometimes I’m a good kid, following the path laid out and eating all my meals. Sometimes I’m a decent man, taking care of the people around me and walking around the puddles in my way. But sometimes I’m just a boy spending his time buying records instead of reading. And sometimes I’m just a boy staying in bed when the sun is out. And sometimes I’m just a boy only looking out for my own corrupted interests. And sometimes the neon signs get me. And sometimes I want them to.
And I don’t blame you. For dreaming of other planets. For singing lullabies to the stars. For letting go when the going gets tough. For escaping life. I don’t blame you.
But sometimes I wish I did.
You told me they had found a New Earth. A planet with rocks and rivers and a sun to keep the plants warm. You said it with an air of optimism, as if you could envision yourself on the New Earth, taking strolls on a different wing of our galaxy, and looking back on Old Earth through a telescope, waving, even, for whoever had been left behind. But the light travels forty years to get from New Earth to Old Earth, and I couldn’t help but wonder if I would ever catch you waving before it was too late. If maybe my time ran out before the light could go the distance. Or if perhaps you saw me there next to you on New Earth, working around the problem by bringing me with you, just as I would bring you anywhere.
But I said none of those things aloud. It didn’t seem right as we were lying on the floor, glancing up into the ceiling and talking about the open space on the other side of it. How very unconnected would I seem to ask such self-centered questions when we were considering galaxy plateaus and light years. I turned my head to look at your ocean eyes, feeling myself drown as I realized half a life too late that half a life is halfway dead, and I had already spent seven-thousand days without you. It was then and there I decided to appreciate the elasticity of time and make sure every minute of us would count as an hour, and every hour would count as a lifetime. There were no rules until we made them. There was no distance between us as long as we held on.
You’re the only one who thieves away my words before I even begin to look for them, leaving this emptiness when I want to impress with the right words to express the beating of my heart when your eyes cause my body to react to life like a movie or a big silly love song that just keeps growing, growing, grown always a size too small compared to my dreams my wishes for eternities but of course who can, who could ever escape time for more than a fleeting moment in your arms when the Earth keeps pulling with its big sad gravity, sad down-to-earth attitude to skinny levitating loves pining for the sunny side of clouds, wanting forever to be a jumping mess high above all the people who are high above everything, being masters of snow and rain, angels and buckets of it holding hand-in-hand on the handles because we’ve finally got a handle on life, if only I could find the words a sentence anything a letter even, just an a or a y, or a u and i, these big dreams, silly ideas I keep returning to, the lake scene, the tent, the crowd, keep wondering if they happened or maybe I just imagined them as I imagine every little detail around those pictures, the sound, the smell, the taste of lips on lips on lips, I found your old scent again today blowing in the wind when I walked along the parked busses, coming from a girl in front of me–thought for a moment, but she was nothing like you, and your scent is not like that anymore, you’re so different now, we’re all so different, and only the memories stay the same, but do they really? or are they changed along with us, leaving in dust what we ourselves have shed from our lives, or are they that one thing that remains, the hopes of a younger generation along with embarrassments and complications and wonders, oh the wonders of a new feeling, a new sound, new albums always shaking us, making us see the world anew through the eyes of Brooklyn, so far away and yet resting deep inside our minds as if we were the ones who had lived all those lives not so much older than us, and yet wiser, everyone’s always wiser because we only notice the things they know that we don’t, never all the things we know that they don’t and vice versa, it’s the great deception of this world, this masquerade ball of a planet, it’s the same thing over and over and over again.
Looking out the window, I see rain falling now. The beginning of the 3rd winter this winter. In a couple of hours, the rain will have ceased being rain and started falling as snow instead. Frosty downpour, as you call it. It will shelter me, at least for tonight, and I will light candles and play tribal music as we do when we welcome spirits–and when we ask them to leave us again.
The spirits of winter have a difficult time letting go this term. Really, though, it’s just us who have forgotten how long they used to reign in our bodies and minds, our societies and nature. All these small breaks from them, they confuse us. We don’t know what to expect, and we’re frightened when even the world plays with its cards close to its chest.
We’re used to other people trying not to let us know what is on their minds, just as we keep things for ourselves. But as frustrating as that is, it’s what we use to separate us from other beings and objects. We have a mind of our own that no one can truly know. We’re more than mere causation.
But what happens when nature starts breaking down these barriers? When the winter spirits no longer act according to the rules once established? We prepare for the depression, the darkness, the cold, but always in expectation of the summer ahead. We prepare for problems, because we know things will move easier once we get through to the other side.
Where is the other side? Where is the other side that we should have reached by now? We’re still stuck here, in our own minds, our own hearts–if we can even call them that.
My young heart
Chose to believe
We were destined.
All need love,
Call it a lesson
(The xx: “On Hold”) They say rain is a sign of rebirth. Now, I don’t know anything about that, but I can’t help but wonder if maybe I can wash the winter off me if I go outside now.