The kindergarten bus bounces past me this morning as I shamble out to my car and a little cheerful kid waves To me shyly and whatever it is we are way down deep Opens like a fist that’s been clenched so long it did not Think it would ever open again and for a moment I am That kid and she is my daughter and I’m waving to her Hoping she will wave to me and we think that we can’t Write that for which we do not have words but actually Sometimes you can if you go gently between the words
Petals unfold from your tongue, you speak crimson velvet freshness into being. An opening bud of careful precision, a floral life floating on your breath, bees, and boundary.
You expand a mystery of molecules, at your word atomic spice springs into breeze; you dizzy hummingbirds, intoxicate butterflies. Shining beams play, shimmer, light your Shulamite, invite a tango.
You draw. Come, find my notes poured out in the garden, etched among lemons and limes. See, the lost apricot awakens! Sweet shoots adorn black crumbling branches. On every cell I inscribe: what was dead is alive.
You wait for me to discover your love among the leaves and thorns, (will I perceive it?) your hidden blossom of wonder, a shy heart-shaped valentine of third heaven, a sachet for this moment, a marked downbeat
of song, a bodily inhale of my eyes and skin and hair and breath. Filled with rising melody, your unspoken lyrics whispered on wind, I join your written roses in swaying dance, in blood-red bloom of belonging.
Hauled an old longsleeved cotton shirt out of the drawer Yesterday and once again time ground gears and shifted Back forty years and this very shirt which was then more Shirt than holes is handed to me by my lean gruff almost Always quiet tall older brother who is of course my hero And I gape at him unbelievingly and say Really, for me? And he nods and so I come into possession of his college Shirt earned playing football for a tavern or something as Quotidian as that but not for me, not at all for me—that’s The point. Whatever we think is quotidian isn’t. The pub Was called Sweeney’s. It closed long ago. I would not be Surprised if this was the last Sweeney’s shirt in existence. I’ll always have his shirt in a drawer. If I touch it, here he Is in the room with me, smiling at how a shirt can make a Kid speechless with astonished joy, even forty years later. Isn’t that amazing? We hardly ever say how amazing it is That you can freeze time and reverse it and make it caper And spin it back to anywhere anyone you used to be. Isn’t That amazing? A snatch of song, a scent, a battered collar, A ratty old pub jersey. So many time machines. Yes, time Wins. My brother withered and vanished. Yet here he sits On the edge of the bed snickering at me as the shirt hangs Way down past my knees. No religion owns resurrections.