Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"Purple Mountain Majesty"
or "Dishes & Gratitude 2.0"

Fall 2012

I live by the purple mountains.
Engrossed by the majesty of 
Dead seasons and
Our lives,
I live amidst this wonder.

We love in front of an orange fire,
Having no shame for 
What the fire sees or knows.
I sit here, now, alone,
On this couch that hosts so much 
In this Space that holds so many

Our lives are written on this couch, 
And in these mountains.
I know, so many of us, 
Have secrets we share only with the valley.
I used to pour my heartache into the valley. 
Now, I pour
Wonder, and 
Awe, and


I wrote a poem, once, 
About heaps of dishes and bottomless gratitude,
And everyone thought it applied.
When I sit on my own,
The world comes to me in verse,
And I try to transmit
Things Everybody Knows.
I think I've never had an original thought,
And everybody knows that.
I try to name what we know, collectively, 
So we can put it in a bin and look at it.
And examine whether we think it's true.
This is my work.
This is my life.


This is my life.
I've never understood that.
I understand less now than ever before. 
The washing machine is going and
My heart is beating and
Twenty minutes ago a Swimming Pool was here and
We call today Tuesday.
Space and Time.

Ok, fine. These are the types of things 
You have to accept 
If you're going to keep your human being suit on. 
So I pretend to accept. 
I pretend to get it, and to incorporate, these
Things that everybody knows.
It doesn't make a bit of sense to me, but that's fine. 
You can't understand everything. 
And people pretend things all the time.

So I'll pretend for awhile longer, that I understand 
How light and color work.
I'll pretend with you that we're stuck in these bodies.
It's no problem for me to 
Pretend that electrons exist, and that 
Time is a one way street, and that the 
Bushes won't turn into crocodiles.

I do love this game. 
I love to be here with you.
I love when we all pretend together,
When we put on our important voices and
io parlo italiano and
We try to make miracles happen.
Or even better when we garb ourselves in
Orange jump suits and
Halves of mints and
Try to make an appropriate face.
I love that.

I love living with other people who 
Float in and out of the game(s) with me,
Who have somehow, over the years, 
Become perfect compliments to each other.
He will never clean the bathroom and
I will never chop firewood and
This is what I call
We make the daily transition from coffee to beer,
And live somewhere in between our 
Oh so complicated relationship to both.
Hell, babe, you bring the sparkle and I'll bring the love
And let's call it the Art Monastery Project! 

We'll fight about it and LAUGH about it and
Still we cry and still we feel pain and
Still we don't know when to stop. 

Maybe we live here with each other because 
We can't help it.
Turns out - 
We really don't know any better.
Maybe the arteries that lead to our hearts have become 
So entwined over the years that it is 
Physically painful 
To separate. 
Maybe we have to, 
Just to prove we can, and to have the 
Joy of reuniting again.

I know that when I leave this year,
Things will be different. 
Everything will change.
Everybody knows that. 

But they don't know 
How many cups of coffee 
With perfectly frothed milk 
We've had together over the years. 
No one knows why the word 
Can send half of us bursting into giggles and 
Make me run away,
Or how many times I wanted to kiss you,
Or why I relax when I see a bird.
These are the real 
Things Nobody Knows;
These are the secrets we agree to keep.

And when we go, 
The rhythm of our hearts will change. 
I imagine it will adjust, to be not quite so in sync.
I imagine that's inevitable.

But I think there's something about these 
Secrets that are kept somewhere between the
Purple mountain majesty and 
Her soft lips, and all the labbri di Labro
Somewhere between these
Stories told 'round the orange fire and 
Hidden in the winks of poems - 

There is a wonder that will not die.
There is a spell that won't be broken. 
There is a dream that we live and we keep.

And everybody knows:
Endings aren't real.

(The end.)