Friday, November 27, 2009

A Memory



Thanksgiving

You should know that those few days
that I spent with you are some of my
sweetest memories.
They play in my mind like an indie film,
slow moving and full of sweet, dialogue.
We saw Colin Firth, on the big screen,
falling in love with a house-girl who spoke no English.
Their confusion in communicating, beautiful.
They spoke to each other in silent ways.

And we walked, hand in hand,
down historic, hilly streets with
big, blue houses, wrapped with porches,
scattered with white rocking chairs and
pots of bright, red geraniums.
You said we could live in one of those houses.
You knew a home I could call my own would
tempt me, sooth me.

On one of those walks, we found a vintage shop full
of brightly colored scarves and clothes from
so many scattered lives.
I found a jacket...worn, brown suede with
huge, copper snaps. The lining was silk and
printed with pictures of cowboys throwing lassos.
Western, yellow stitching lined the pockets.
I coveted that jacket but couldn't
talk myself into spending the money.
Later, you took me back there, bought the jacket,
and presented it to me,
like a promise.
I still have it.
I slip my arms into it on cold days,
and think of you.
I wonder where you are.
Still in that cold, tiny apartment?
Married to some earthy, granola girl,
her fingernails dirty with earth?
Or nursing aging parents,
trying to be the good son,
their only son.
Still thinking over every decision
so carefully, so slowly, under the guise
of being careful, but steeped in the reality of your fear.
Nothing ever moves.
Still the manager of a warehouse store,
stocked full of party favors sold in bulk,
and insignificant people.
Insignificant to you because
you never let them in, always hiding
behind your plastic name tag.
Living a safe life, while you wait...
and write...
about an imagined life.

4 comments:

Lisa said...

Beautiful. I remember him. I was going to ask you what happened between you, but I guess it has something to do with the last few lines. Regrets?

BTW I don't think you need an explanation for the poem.

Dan Kent said...

This is amazing writing. Beautiful. I can see it all. I see you are a poet, as well as a prose writer. Such a fine crafting of words, which is why I keep coming back.

Diahn said...

Exactly right.

Gorgeous piece of writing, friend...

bleigh said...

Beautiful writing, Melinda! I loved your imagery!