When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
Now or never: to hear the birds, the little crested stealers-of-catfood and the lavish greeters-of-the-day, while I take out the compost; to smell the mingle of soured food from the bin with the musk of good late fall loam in the backyard and to not wrinkle my nose, but breathe deeply; to feel the sun through winter’s brilliant bite and shiver. To offer up all the prayers I know, in languages known and unknown, to pay the postage of a letter to the Holy with the ennui of the day-to-day, and still to sanctify the spool of days with clumsy, fumbling human love. It could be the end of the world, this annual descent to the year’s dark nadir. It could be the beginning, as the heavy soil of our anxious dreaming presses against us, urging toward return. I plan a dinner, fret and laugh and sigh and get up late, make the coffee, recite the blessings over water and fire and smoke, say goodbye, say hello, take the tangled fibers of life and drop the spindle, weaving a bright and durable thread, and when it is cut—when it is cut, or broken: unravel it. What few treasures the skein had held, what mornings of light and afternoons of rain, what sorrow or joy, let them scatter, just as the flocks of sparrows scatter, with song and the flash of wings.
In response to Poem, at the possible end of the world.