Tonight I am quiet.
I sit alone in my almost clean room—old
Coke bottles stand on my shelves,
filled with pop tabs, bits of magazines,
a testament to my overwhelming need to hold on
to the most useless of things.
Outside, the moon is trying to be full.
(I tried smoking once
but the scent stayed too long on my breath.
It reminded me of you. I don’t suppose
you know what I mean, at all.)
Stars hold hands better
than I do. They keep reaching out to us
only burning bright
even when dying. Someday
I would like to be a star,
to have the strength to love something
even when it will never love me back.
It would be nice to live unperturbed
by partialness or fragmentation,
looking down and realizing
that you are an incomplete set.
Even when I was a child
I was always fond of even numbers.
I can still see myself
playing matchmaker with the magnets
on my grandmother’s fridge.
(Want to know a secret?
The truth is, I never
actually had one. I just
wanted you to ask.)
Strength and bravery
are not the same.
You can’t say the moon is weak, but it’s afraid
that it won’t be able to hear us
answer when it calls, or that
even if it does, it will only be an echo
of its own hollow voice
bouncing back from Earth.
(I used to wonder if we
were connected. Then I wondered if I
was just holding on so tightly it was impossible
to discern the difference. Thank you
for the birthday present.
I still treasure it.)
People have a strange inclination
to personify the sky. I wonder if
it is just another form of escapism, like dreaming
of ghosts you will never touch. We prefer to think it’s possible
that we are not the loneliest.
Perhaps that’s why we want so badly
to connect with other life out there.
(I’m sorry I never said
goodbye. I’m afraid
I am too much like the moon.)