“Words are beautiful” Che said “but actions
Defiant to the end,
before a bullet broke through his skull.
The man of action reduced to such beautiful
“You cannot kill a revolution!”
Or is that just a myth,
am I remembering it wrong
as I have done
so many times
(too many times)
we spent those stolen moments together?
Why am I writing poetry
while you are on the other side of the
living a better life without words like
only noise thrown into the void,
another waste waiting
Why did I choose words
I get hammered, forget you exist / there’s no way I’m forgetting this”*
That city turning pink
in the sun’s slow descent;
the night air still vibrant
yet gentle now
in its old age the day
had finally found a way to be kind
& calm without losing all passion for
your hair, shed like feathers discovered in
a mess of tresses untangled
& tangled again.
Now all only a memory
of a scent & the slope of your shoulders
at 5 a.m in the morning;
photographs of long lost days
when we still adored each other,
before the decay became
the silence, the speech, the years of peace
& tired eyes
& not fucking any more
of the performativity;
out of sync with the organ grinder;
a comedy without laughter,
a tragedy without despair,
All this & more now lives below
a gravestone with no
our dream decaying
beneath the surface.
* Scott Huchison
Do you remember the faces
of all those abandoned buildings,
like a metaphor we wanted but could never touch?
& so how we turned to punk & the band that
turned to shit
because we fucked up by being too fucked up
on speed, weed, drink &
of the stage we were too afraid to admit?
I miss those days:
There’s a freedom in nihilism
so often forgotten or ignored;
nothing hurts those who believe in nothing
& care only for the comfort of pleasure.
The last man
cannot be turned back after walking the path
for too long.
That place was a contusion upon
the surface of the earth & we
were the worms
crawling in the dirt…
but at least we weren’t alone.
together we created a nostalgia
I can still feel,
& when our mistakes drift away
they will join the birds
who will sing for us instead.
The weight of the rain cripples the name
of a person in a place
you swore never to forget or let
& the songs & the long moments
of hands twisting time with bodies
entwined in nights we wish would never die,
but all things move toward their end,
& yet time hasn’t taken us completely,
so there’s no need
even as we
let go of what once was.
Some nights we cannot see the moon,
but during others its
repeats the silver nights
precluding those golden mornings we spent
& then when
the morning light made me choke as
how the gentle susurration blended
with the birdsong & the light began to
curve like the branches above us
skin within which poison blends with pollen
& flowers blossom before I pluck them
to place in your hair where
they will wither & die.
The past still lingers in the present,
& refuses to leave with the grace
of living things.
This is what regret means:
never to forget someone
knowing of all the lives that could have been;
for the last time.