Sunday, March 20, 2016

James Diaz- A Poem & Photo

Poem for M

The first time we met
and you smiled like a half moon
hugging cloud 
in the dark of night
I was a bit nervous
like a star that had recently imploded
with a thousand years left
in my corner of the universe
before the realization
the dispersal of my specific light
would hit
and begin to seed other possibilities
like becoming the ink for a future bible
or an unhappy man 
who would soon find out
that even farmers' gray beards
could make him smile
the little things
small fragmented moments
building into bigger 
more durable structures

'What is the one song that you cannot 
live without?' you asked me 
in between Jane Austen and French
simulation prattle
'You don't have to listen to it all of
the time, but it would be the one song that you
are left with'
'Sunny Came Home' I told you,
'how does it go?' you asked 
and then I sang it to you wrongly
and badly and you smiled again like a moon
filling out and chasing cloud scuttle away
and telling that imploded star to your left
to just embrace its god-damned dispersal's, its not knowing

'which is all, I think, just a roundabout
way of trying to say don't give up, you know,
it's not too late'
this was the last thing 
or the first thing
that I remember you saying,
and inwardly I cried 
but the ego is so stoic and prim
it must not bruise, bloom or crash so openly
and we were both a bit cold 
on that downtown park bench 
in what, now, seemed like a lifetime away
from Jane Austin and badly sung songs
and permissions of vulnerability
of infinitesimally small, but ever living-
ever durable hopes 

and though we are moon and star
and our worlds, 
our lives, 
are so respectively different,
through you I sensed a before-life,
not after, not 'it's too late'
but 'it's never too late'
'it's only as late as you think it is'
and 'you are only as old as you feel'
and what I am trying, failing to say, 
is that for the first time, in a long while,
I longed to be young, open, once more,
I am open once more.
Bio: James Diaz lives in upstate New York. He is the founding editor of the online literary arts journal Anti-Heroin Chic. His work has appeared in Indiana Voice Journal, HIV Here & Now, Chronogram, Cheap Pop Lit and Foliate Oak.

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