The student loans I paid off,
The guilt-free trip to Sydney for a post-doc
Knowing life could no wrong.
How it all tumbled, like domino squares
The first to the last. Now I look at all the houses in Melbourne,
And wonder what secrets they hide.
I remember back in 2006, my days of house hunting,
The backyard I built my “two feet above ground” treehouse in,
The bathroom with two sinks, hers and mine,
A shower big enough for two, and a hold of the heart, which now
Doesn’t look like a clenched fist, but an open palm,
That tried once, to grab a bird in the hand, and failed.
Now I look at reruns of Miss Saigon,
Regret no longer a nagging spell,
Only an occasional “what if”.
The mound of sand I see on a beach, unelaborated
Of her bastions, waiting for another set of palms to sculpt.
A sand castle, what an alabaster skinned
Woman, sculpted 3 years back. Now I don’t
Dream of hanging onto chopsticks like a pair of stilts,
I just wake up to the Celtic white goddess,
Who became the wind beneath
My wings, the bird in my clenched hand,
And the stork that she will never become,
And yet, will paint our horizon, over and over,
Like a canvas, each an abstract painting
Of our child-free world.
How the esoteric, the arcane,
Is now a part of us, the silence in the room,
And a feeling that energy will be
Wasted in love-making. She reads,
I write, the language of love, looks so
Much like what the British use,
Our pillow talk, an intimation of how we
Are beautiful together, a definition of
Something in a surreal surfeit,
In that state of autarky, being in love is.