I open up my fingers, my hands
and he doesn’t fall through
he was already
walking away

I guess I never did
need to let go
I was only ever
and he never held on at all

in the beginning
it seemed as though
he were walking straight
to me

his eyes
his words
his reach
for me

but no matter how many times
he stepped toward me
he just kept getting further

and now
just now
I see it

from that very first step
in my direction
he was already
walking away
from the very first proclamation
of love
the future was blooming
in black
blooming along the path
that path that goes
in the only direction he knows

he only knows
the direction to go
to get

Where have you been all my…
All of your what?
Your ironic existence
spent waiting
only to disregard what you wasted all that time waiting for?

a sad magician
moonwalking backward
toward happiness

your grand illusion
and now I see

you were always, are always
walking away from
and never
walking to

Thin As They Are

thin is the paper that holds these words about love
and thinner still that strains under the heavier words of trust
this paper almost transparent
a veil
actions and in-actions shine right through
and I can see
how the ink bleeds

on the back
one blot
a bird
some stranger
a crow
a taker

this can’t be you
these words could not
bleed out this

I look to the window
a soft breeze is blowing
there is the sweet smell of rain
and something

a wind might come
sweet and soft
and blow
these papers away
they would lift up so easily
thin as they are

and I will let them

Between Us

Love’s lasso
became a noose
encircling my neck
an ironic embrace

that choking
that clenching
that tightening

it yanked me by my throat
and dropped me to my knees
choking me
from the inside out
that ending
that strangled
that burdened
that chained up
that locked down

is forgettable
until you need it
and then you don’t need to be reminded
you can feel it
you can feel the absence
of air

the space between
was invisible
but I could feel it
I could feel the absence
of you
it felt like that stretch of time that can pull your thirst right in
to an empty canteen
when your head is thrown back
and your mouth is gaping

you could turn to dust
while you wait
for that one last drop
to fall
or evaporate
and all the while
is it there
inside that perpetual question
was it ever there
hope is dying an invisible death

a ghostly
a silent
but I heard it
that sound
like the pause that is born
after a heartbeat
the pause
that contains

so hope rests in peace
in the space between
and there is something new
in the space between
you and me
I used to think
that the space only existed
because you were not there to fill it up
it represented
your distance
and my gaping thrown back thirsty

but I was wrong

from the very beginning
I would catch my breath
at the sight of you
even a glimpse of a photograph
and I would catch my breath
as if I had somehow inhaled you
and I could hold you
by holding my breath
but I was suffocating myself

I was choking on my emotions
trying not to let them out
because I was afraid
that letting go of them
would mean letting go of you
and letting go of you
would mean letting go of hope
I was strangling myself
trying to hold on to you
to hold in the feeling of you
so I could hold off seeing
that you weren’t really there

I don’t understand
how I confused you
with air and hope
and how I feared and avoided
that space between us
because it represented
the absence of you
and I didn’t want to be
where you weren’t

but now
I am right outside of that place between us
and I can see you much better from here
I don’t make you small enough to fit inside my heart anymore
and I can see that this place isn’t here because you are not filling it
it is bigger than both of us
you can’t fill it up
you can’t give enough
you aren’t supposed to
you never were

I was trying to breathe you
I was trying to get from you
what only exists in a place
that is created
for our letting go
for the ways we surrender
and release and exhale
everything here is invisible
and silent
and can only be felt
with the heart
a new way to know
and see
and feel

the space between us
is not empty at all
it has always been full
hope lives here
it is full of new beginnings
and inspiration
the fulfillment of dreams happens here
your own dreams and mine
it is where the exchange occurs
the giving and receiving of gifts
or smiles
this is where our moments stay
and everything truly important
where we write and read and share
there are new songs and better bad movies and new memories if we want
this place between us is full of more possibilities than these
and it is also full
of air

I needed to be reminded about air
when I was trying to breathe you in
I must have thought you better than air
and impossible to forget
but I won’t need to be reminded
about air anymore
because I feel the absence of it
when I try to make you take it’s place
and I’ll never need to be reminded about you
I don’t think I can even start to forget

I’m learning a new way
to feel close to you
it is in the air
between us


Heart on a Platter

she stares at the blank page
hoping that she won’t fall in
not again
not again

last time she came this way
it was better
there were words on the page but

now there are no words
no words at all
there’s nothing here to show where she’ll end up
so she
can’t fall in
can’t go down
can’t step out
into that
blank world

where have all the words gone?

it changed
it changed
it changed
he pulled the world out from
under me and it changed

there’s a plate on my heart
staring out like a headlight
like one beam of light
out into the darkness
this white plate
there is nothing on it

there is nothing on it
but reflection

the moon stole my heart away
but I got it back
when the words fell off the page
and the world fell away
I took it back off that platter
and now
I see the words again
all the new words

and there is nowhere to fall
I only thought there was

This Distance

when I feel that distance
this distance between us
I just look up and I see our fingers intertwined over my shoulder
and you whirl me around
closing the distance between us
with a dance

this dance
this dance that pulls me in close to you
just when I feel more than an arm’s length away
you pull me in and show me
what the distance is for

it’s for feeling that pull
it’s for feeling your arms encircle me
it’s for feeling you all around me
strong and there
and here for me

back to front
your hands on my hips
we sway
feel your heart thumping on my shoulder blade
you are here
so close to me
we sway
we sway
to the back and forth
the pull
and the push

chest to chest
your hand on my shoulder
my hand on your heart
we rock
fingers trickle down my back
and it’s those
those tender moments
that I come back for
when I am more than an arm’s length

and I know
if I couldn’t feel the distance
I wouldn’t know
what this closeness is for