by Sylvia Stout
The moon may be a quarter of a million miles away,
but it felt closer than you that day…
like I might trace its craters.
The distance in your eyes was far and wide-
twice as high as the sky and shining black as night.
Nearly a thousand suns had lived and died
in the time it took you to borough beneath my skin.
You’d bore your way in,
dug every hole-perforated the soul.
It was April when we first met.
We danced to the heartbeat of life in full bloom.
I coveted you like I was Spring
and you were the rain.
Though, time taught me-
wanting you was not the same.
See, the rain belonged with the Spring;
you never belonged with me.
You never belonged to a thing.
My hopes fell before you,
fluttering to the ground like the
last autumn leaves from the trees; discarded.
You shed me like a snake sheds her skin.
My tears clung to one another
behind the sanctuary of my lashes-
Begging to burst forth-
destined to become a billion scattered atoms
pooling in soaked ashes at my feet.
I wanted to dive.
For a moment, time struggled to keep,
hearts struggled to beat…
the bellowing voice in my head bled
down my throat and kindled a fire
in the pit of my belly.
‘Move,’ it screamed; ‘dry your tears and retreat!’
With feet and heart as heavy as lead, I
tilted my chin towards the heavens and fled.
It took less than a hundred dead sunsets to teach,
I wasn’t running from him… I was bounding toward me.