My heart feels more than my mind can define. Unsettled, a bit heavy, a little bit afraid. Perthro cautions me; make no assumptions. I go inside, I listen, I wait. Wanting to send out that message of comfort and hope, needing to wait, to trust that she knows where to find it.

Stay a While

I’m learning to recognize your frequency, when you stroke the silk nearest you, and tremors stir my consciousness. Sometimes I let the pulses pass through me, carrying your touch. Sometimes I hold out my hand and tell you, “Here, I’m here, stay a while with me.”

Getting Inside

Loud, bouncing, big, and
A tiny slip, a hiccup of time
did you notice?

Talking on, asking questions,
filling space with you.
Stop answering.
She listens. Stares.

Let’s move, go for a walk,
take the dog.

Touch her arm,
slide, hold that hand,
just keep walking.
No sound, but footsteps,
leaves shuffling, dog panting.

There’s a bench, let’s sit.
The sisters are starting to wake,
as day gives way to night.
Cool silence a safe blanket,
hiding her skin.

She offers up a simple smile.
“She’s about six you know.
She’s been waiting a long time.”

Remembering Little Joe

I’m not supposed to say how you died.
No one ever says it out loud.

We’re allowed to remember you:
Steph’s annoying little brother,
playing pranks on us
D & D Wizard,
the costumes your mom made
Chef extraordinaire,
making his name in NYC

We’re sometimes allowed to remember
the lover who died before you did.

You were never silent.
Geez, sometimes we’d wish you were!
Now, I wish we could still hear you,
shouting at us,

AIDS! It’s called AIDS,
and you’d damn well better
deal with it.

Hold On

Tendrils creep over coarse and jagged knobs
with modest stealth, claim purchase
in every hidden crevice

Slow, imperceptible growth, persistent,
sensing surface weaknesses
there pressing in, holding on

Over time a web is formed, an anchor
holding fast amidst the storm
your living net of comfort

hold on