Pipe Dreams

I used to say to myself

That old Mormon mantra

About how if I were just good enough

If I stayed on that straight & narrow

I’d be rewarded in the end.

In the end.

What did I know, then,

About it not coming?

There are so many days

When all I want, need

Is to throw in the towel

And meet my end.

It seems glorious there.

I had these dreams

That my parents would love me

That if I were kind to my friends

Or worked hard at work

Things would be reciprocated.

But they aren’t.

They haven’t ever been.

Life is crushing.

Now, I face the brink

Of daily tears

Of unrelenting obligation

Of pain.

But full of purpose

To make things better for others

Because I know I can.

The road to heaven

Isn’t easy.

And all I can do

Is pray it’s worth it.

Advertisements

Little Bird

I love the way

Your eyes wrinkle

With delight

When you are looking at me.

I love how calm

It always seems you are

When we meet in silence.

Is it that easy,

When we strip away

All the expectations?

I love all the ways

You make me laugh

How you tell stories

That sometimes make

little sense,

And I never care to know why.

Sometimes, even,

I admire your open hesitation

To giving in to

What you know

Your heart desires.

What courage must it take

To resist what you want,

In return

for safety.

Pay no mind,

Little bird,

I’ll be here

When you feel sure enough

To approach my embrace,

To be your friend,

To mind after your heart.

If only to see

You break into a smile

One last time.

Like Wales

You have the kindest eyes.

And a gentle, tender smile.

Sometimes I dream

Of memories

That haven’t happened yet.

You’re gentle.

You’re more gentle than I’m used to.

But I want your tenderness

For the rest of my life.

I used to want to be handled,

And then I met you.

You’re the perfect weather

For a cozy sweater

A flask of coffee

A leisurely walk

With brisk wind,

Embracing our cheeks.

Your hands, cold,

Desire my body,

Perfect temperatures

For our embrace.

You hold me

Without expectation

Without ulterior motive

With care,

With ease,

With simplicity.

I want your arms around me

Forever.

I love you like a fog

I love you like a fire

Crackling in the hearth

Of my swelling heart.

Your heart is warm

Like old Scotch in my belly.

You make me giddy

Smile with glee.

I could drink

Your kind smile,

The same beautiful taste

Hitting my lips

Day in, day out,

Swirling in your orbit

For the rest of time.

Wondering

I spent all evening

With someone

Who reminded me of you.

First, the face, the hair, the height

then, the accent, the snarky comments

the playful, professional flirting.

It was like looking at you,

hearing you,

Watching you hear me.

I wonder,

Without all the red tape,

What could it all have been?

I remember the night we finally kissed.

Electric, heart-pounding

Unexpected.

I thought you were a cocky suit

With a fancy title and a fancy job

And raging insecurity.

I was right.

The night you came over

You melted in my arms,

Took off the armor,

And cried in my room.

In that moment, I loved you.

Not the tough exterior, the pomp,

But the jelly inside.

The kind, doubtful, sad soul

With the sad eyes.

I saw those same sad eyes tonight

And I loved them just the same.

If we’d met in another place,

At another time,

Would you still be curled up

Talking about fantasy novels

About administrative law

In my room,

Your head on my chest?

Would you be grieving with me?

Could I have made those sad eyes smile?

I spent all evening

With a man who looked like you,

Felt like you,

And, beside him, someone who knows you.

Find your way.

Take off the suit.

Remove your armor.

I’ve seen you without,

beautiful, vulnerable, deeply personal.

You matter.

Matter more.

Never Say Never

I remember now the moment I fell in love with you. 

It was faster than I anticipated, 

occurring through my fear and pain.

I had a panic attack, and you,

You sat down in front of me, 

Your hands on the sides of my face,

Demanding my eye contact,

Teaching me to follow your breaths.

“Slow inhale, and hold.

Exhale. Let the tears come. Let the pain in.

Calm down those nerves, my darling.

Breathe in. Expand your container.

Breathe out. Empty it all.

I’m here, you’re held.

Never alone again.

Breathe in, composure.

Breathe out. There’s a smile!

See. You’re okay.”

With that, love. 

Expansive, all consuming, 

Forehead touching,

Transformational love. 

With those breaths, I fell farther

Down the rabbit hole that is your heart.

Never alone again.

And I believed you.

Every time you said it, I did.

Until the very end. 

Until the day you left,

When you looked back, saying,

“Never say never.”

No matter how far you are, 

I still feel those hands,

Soft and strong, 

calming my nerves. 

When I need a friend.

I still smile when I think of yours.

“There it is!” You’d declare.

They are the moments where I continue

To fall in love with you

Even still.

Translucent

You left nearly an hour ago

But I can still smell you 

On these sheets I’ve climbed into

Wishing you hadn’t gone.

You impress me

Always

And before, you’ve held back

But this time was different

You looked at me

This time

Like you wanted to see me.

There was no film or filter.

It was easier than I even wanted

Let alone expected

Easier to be held

By your radiance.

Can we start over?

Can we make this the first night,

Our first date,

The first time we made love,

The first time in discovery?

I long for more of this,

Of you,

Unencumbered, 

Unfiltered,

Unmarried.

You’ve got all of you to give now,

And tonight,

You gave it to me, for the first time.

I’ve never felt so whole.

So seen. So completely seen.

Your gaze into my eyes,

Your hand on the small of my back,

Your knee pressing against mine,

Your tenderness on my lips,

Your hand inside my hand,

Your skin against my tongue,

Against my skin,

Enveloping me in knowing.

Vulnerable yet safe.

Seen and yet 

Longing for your eyes to keep seeing.