Shadow Box

It’s the detritus I’m after
the quiet accumulation of time
along the back walls
of the closet
in the underused drawers
of the night stand.
I purge them
only to regret my harsh
judgement of ticket stubs
and tidbits of parcels
it’s a life after all, my every
everyday, and I’ve kept them
for one reason or another,
because I am afraid of forgetting
or that I may never be happy like this
again. But they collect,
the casual evidence of suburbia:
receipts, wrapping paper,
whimsical notes,
until I gather them up
and feast of their sadness…
sad that I kept them
sad that I will
never change.
–ECW

Draft – apology 127

image

i want to say it all in a syllable
i want you to know that, even now
i play the plot in my head on repeat
to find something I missed
capture it’s essence
a flavor, a sour note that tasted
of lemongrass.
of the last time I ate with your family
and we ordered takeout
and listened to the secadas
–ECW

draft – wedding guests

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you asked if I would invite them
the men who came before you;
you asked like you were giving
permission the way a hand picks
a lock; cautiously with carnal
self awareness; because a locked
door is a negotiation, a compro-
mise between what is and what
might have been, a weighing of
outcomes in the palm; supple
inviting: why is it locked? what
might I never know, you asked
if I would invite them to see what
the door looked like, and if this
like so many other secrets,
was worth picking at.

–ECW

Draft – Foucault Pendulum

image

someday, when we grow up
this too will be a memory
glowing with all the passion
of a darling age; someplace
elsewhere where we’ve
kept all the dishes pristine
and all the portraits are of young
lovers -us I assume- smiling wide
enough to swallow our medicine
someday, when we are gone
from here, this place will be perfect
and we will remember everything
golden and foil-stamped
like our wedding invitations
which everyone attended,
even the people who got sick
even the people we couldn’t
squeeze in, the record we keep
will be complete, circling the dowel
coming around and around
in tidy lassajous curves.

–ECW

Poem: Quagmire Kinfolk

Quag(mire) kinfolk

the girl in the marsh was me
when I was small and we were lost
I left the hurt there in the marsh
to be cleansed by mists
(to be) wavering weeds
the girl in the marsh was me
and I was younger then but
not                       so young
as to meet dread for the first time
he and I walked alongside
grassy heaps
and ferried our secrets
the girl(in)               the marsh was me
I left her there to wait on my return…
the marsh,  she           knew all
about the low hanging fog
and the weight
of water
in the
quag

–ECW