I live by variation:
cream in coffee then 1% milk.
sometimes vanilla syrup from a plastic canister.
sometimes running with a watch and counting steps
and other times running backwards
and my eyes are not open
and my heart is wide open
and I feel with light.
I live by flavor:
yogurt collects at the back of the throat
or the cheese puffs from The Levee
after the cold IPAs from bottles.
The weight of mountains on our shoulders
is a heavy cream, a dark roast
only a sip or two allows the arms
to allow yours —
I live by trees:
they won’t stop staring.
I wake up on either side, it never mattered
much. There is rain this morning, a mist
like feathers that don’t stick to wetness.
I don’t have hands to hold an umbrella
but it was just some water, it was
really either side of the bed.
And it started and it ended with
the beginning and ending of rain.
The night sky lit like lightbulbs flickering,
coming to terms with the end of wattage
I remembered we wrote poems back and forth
on tiny screens, this music I listen to now
sings to the glare of phones in concert halls
these words I write now
of a heart broken open to light:
There was the house and a swampy smell.
The crickets were out in the middle of the morning
we saw drones in the sky and took golf carts to the lake.
It wrapped its wet arms around me,
a vibrancy that saves.
I live by the eagle
who watches from his nest.
I live by local trains. It just left as the express arrived
by the river which only foams if you let it.
Anchors turn to algae and a violin whips
to train clanks of steel and concrete viaducts.
I live by home:
to the feeling of a moon
and its responsibilities—
its ashen glow.