Thursday, October 22, 2015

opening lines to 'Reincarnation of a Lovebird'


Already it is snowing, the branches spattering out of darkness
the way I imagine the nerve endings of that grasshopper
did on my sill last summer while the nightingale finished it.

Already old fears condense on the panes with you
a thousand mile or words away, my friend
recently buried, the light in my room blaring all night
the way it’s done in prisons, trying to keep too much emotion
from scurrying out of the corners.

There’s a blind spot in
the middle of your eye, the guilt you feel for loving so fully
in the face of death, or dying in spite of love’s power.

These verbs are searchlights for memories gone over the wall.
It’s all we can do to embrace the distance between us
while night limps across these rooftops, while we preside
over the heart’s fire sale. Outside the streetlights hook
a reluctant sky. Memory won’t save everything.

–Richard Jackson


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