He Forgot Again: (Sunday, November 11, 1962)
I would see all that I was through the sparkling beauty of wings.
The fluttering movements wandering around like a blind bird in a sky blue wind –
like touching a sparkler with the tips of my fingers burning the feeling right off.
The day would edge into night with its thin line of in-between…
shadow faces on the wall I was afraid to fall asleep to with
Honking car horns – broken things /cracked plates, spilled milk.
The last scoop of mashed potatoes was never as good as the first –
Nor could I hide in the back row – the teacher always saw me shrink behind the uncertainty of the blonde-
haired girl in front.
My father kept us waiting outside on ‘assigned’ Sundays –
he forgot more than he remembered and we remained like statues
frozen, with blank childhood stares piercing deep into the dreamy Sunday afternoons.
My mother, then, in her guilt-race of try too hard –
would put scratchy ‘show tunes’ on the 12 pound record player and throw a pizza in the oven.
I would spread my Barbies out along the rim of the living room rug
without anyone yelling –
and pretend that everyone who left just might be coming back.
Then, in the Old Neighborhood
I am older than the wind that had slipped through the bottom of the bedroom door/ I shared the space
with the light from the hallway.
the mirrors on his side of the room always showed him smiling i was the one
always the one –
crying under the bed lost/looking for something random
that was never really mine.
down the hall you could hear them fighting/ the sounds the screams
echo up the street lamps and the garbage cans they rattled –
they rattled all angry.
they never made up, those neighbors.
I was who I was when I lived there and now I am someone else.
who I was I left behind with the brick spaces on the front of the apartment building
with the sheets hanging on the line flapping –
with me leaning out the window thinking you might come back.
trust does not look like fireworks when it explodes in the dead of a night.
it doesn’t need to look both ways when it crosses a street
and its hand never drops to its side when walking with you.
trust ferrets out the long and short of it
and stirs the salt all the way in –
its lap is never shaky and its smooth real pill
goes down without anything always.
trust feels like the inside of a warm pillow
and the cool of the outside when you flip it over.
it is the knowing the other side of the door
and its knock, knowing the knock.
trust never butterflies around in your stomach
with flutters of uncertainty.
trust is the gentle land and the soundless sound it makes