Months. This journal has been in Milwaukee since Josie’s wedding — and sleeping next to Mike makes me write in this less.
Nothing new. School, teaching, trying to write poems. How I want to. Eleanor Wilner is in town. I’ve spent the past two days driving her around. Poet’s notice things. They tell you what they see. Describe in interesting ways — “the birds are doing their sunset swirl.” I dream of being like them. If only …
I carry the weight of you — writing about you might get me no where.
To leave the beloved behind…
Afternoon. Laziness. Out the window, the wind sways the trees. I think of you. Wonder if you even know I’m married. How would you know? Do you sense it? Will I ever see you again? Eight years, ten, and then nothing.
Sunlight on the leaves, if you were there, in my backyard, by the fence, waiting. It cannot happen. I let go. I let her have you. I did not fight. I must not have loved you as much as I claimed to.
Life is not what we think it will be. It breaks you and rebuilds you into someone you no longer life, someone passionless and uneventful.
Too busy to write? Not really. I really have no excuse for my laziness when it comes to writing lately. The holidays flew by, and I was extremely busy, out every night in Chicago.
School was supposed to start yesterday, but an ice storm canceled classes for two and a half days. Now it’s just wait.
I dreamt of you the other night, real life, my husband and your wife, as if we were all friends, hanging out to watch a Bears game.
And wouldn’t it be lovely to be in each other’s lives if only for entertainment.
Dreaming about the end of the world, and somehow you’re in it. Why are you showing up lately? Always, this awareness that we can’t be together. You were you but thinner. I wanted all of you, but you had to leave. Candy coins in different flavors, my ticket to the subway, trying to get back to you, where is the end of all of this?
Magic, a washer, a leaf stuck in the dog’s fur. Happiness. How you’re not here, and haven’t been. Writing words that don’t make sense…
I want to remember standing at the back door in a white robe, watching Belle walk through the yard, her scent alive as she is, as I am. Who holds the key?
I’m a bone, you’re bone (Popa’s line)
welded together by dust.
If you return, I’ll return
(with you). Make flesh
out of all the fruit we cannot
eat. Who said the garden was paradise?
Popa’s “Give Me Back My Rags” feels like my Rhetoric poems. The harsh voice. I like these poems a lot more than the first ones in the book. They remind me of Jeffrey McDaniel’s voice.
I want to take the you and shove it inside of me. It’s my you at times, the way I want to hate it, the need to, just to not be indifferent, just to keep “him” here. If I could throw you across the room, would you land in the mirror and look back at me? Who breaks the stone that skips across the lake?
Pull back the curtains.
Feel light against raw skin.
Capture the eyelash that falls
as you blink.
These are the words I can no longer
To be the mirror that holds
the reflection, to be the reflection
and not the thing.
I dreamt you were stones
at the bottom of a fish tank
black stones, and as the light
hit the water, I could see
through you. You were empty.
My mouth filled you up.