Like the sadness you wish.

Like the sadness you wish
would last a little longer;
the itch on the tip of your nose.
You try to allow
but can’t deny it for too long.
It’s the love
that’s bad for me,
the one I believe
to be true love. The real kind.
But I’m behind.
As far as recognizing real love goes.
If you don’t know you’re pretending
how do you recognize pretense?
How much of what we see,
is sensing what we want to sense?
It’s easier to hide behind the solid things,
the things that don’t squish or drain,
as feelings do.
What once was me and you
is now “the morning after”.
You laugh differently.
Confused and bordering regret.
No more confessions or vulnerabilities.
The hazmat suit is airtight.
The way you treat me,
like a familiar stranger,
I can hardly breathe.
My leg is caught beneath the anchor
of what you were to me,
I’ve been choosing to flail
and tred sludge to win you back,
but the trove of what is
calls out to me
with its shiny-ness and glisten.
I can hear it
and am ready to listen.


This poem was inspired by a poetry prompt exercise – take a line from an existing poem, and start from there.  In this case it was: “Like the sadness you wish would last a little longer” from a John Garvin poem:

Still and All

A moist spring evening lowers itself
Onto the fragrance of lilacs and cherry blossoms,
Like the sadness you wish would last a little longer.

These days we do it every time
Someone drops a hat.
Sometimes we do it even

When no one drops a hat.
It should always be like that,
Don’t you think?

In Iraq right now, someone’s doing it, no?
They have to. Despite everything.
And one of these days one of these days

Will be just one of these days.

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