I thought the fall would never go away.
That we could remain trapped
behind a progression of color changes
in imitation of the signals for stop and slow.
Those are warm colors and we raked them
into big piles to leap from the highest branch.
In my mind I can still see you
sitting on couch beside me
listening to the neighbor’s argue
with the recalcitrant television
through the crumbling wall,
to the constitutive imperfections.
Sometimes this memory keeps me warm.
Then the winter where I couldn’t
quit looking through books
to find us. One piece of paper
and two pens so we could go until
definition was achieved, obscurity
obscured and life decanted into pages.
Into a beautiful prosaic addiction.
Your devotion was wrecked and in
hand two weeks later,
so we opened the windows
and cast the blame on cultural construction.
We grew roots as deep as the days, lengthening.
At the bloom, drunk and
looking for something was
your defense for hands and knees.
I think we amended our seeming.
New things were found and
found wanting but like pack rats
we kept everything, believing
anything might come in handy.
The final summer,
I remember how one night
lying in bed I realized
that the pieces rent from myself
formed no trail back to the start so
I kissed your hands, promised
not to leave and opened the door
to find some unfamiliar seasons.
Maybe there was a time when we had it
cornered. It must have been too small to see.