Monday, April 7, 2014

The Squirrel

The hardwood squirrel was perched just so on the limb, 
tail hanging, arms out, nose lifted to the breeze

Why did he never move? Stuck forever in the place he thought was best

Noise like a tiny banging, a hollow echo, non-stop, drilling into my skull

Fingers long and broad, clasping mine,
slightly calloused from pens, pencils, raking?
I can't think why

So bright, like the harvest moons we want, fluttering lashes,
timid with excitement, brimming with innocence,
the fear is holding and I can't let it loose,
please live forever, please flash those little Chiclets,
please give me the warmth

Leaves kicked up into the sky, and the wet beneath,
the potent smell of earth,
I was four, making mud pies, adding the poison berries for color

Mother's arms were soft, I liked to touch the skin under her arm,
she hated it,
reminded her that she was no child any longer,
I wanted arms around me, she went into her closet,
her face was wet when she emerged

My eyes have grow lighter, blueing around the edges,
lips pointing downward toward the grave,
sleep is not easy as before,
a sharpness that comes and goes with movement,
is it my death poking at me, making me look to the future? 

Watching the flowers bloom in spring, then they are gone again,
the lilac smell a heavy perfume, with no owner-

Places changing, can't remember my address,
long silences remain in my memory,
where was that we stood and admired?
Park in New Jersey, photo by me

Some of my friends and most of my family know what a crazy past two years this has been for me. Almost two years since my father passed away from heart failure (due to complications from Parkinson's) and coming up on a year that my brother Bill passed away from a ruptured gall bladder (while in the ER) I still think of my father often and how he could be so embrassing and stubborn and had absolutely no filter, but also what a bright light he was, he could always cheer me up and and make me laugh.  Most of the time he seemed like he was ignoring whatever it was I was saying, but in some special way he was still there for me. I have so many fun memories of him and the time we spent together, he just got me (in the sense that he knew I was my own person) even when I was a  teenager. He was like an onion (many layers). I miss him all the time and I'm sad that the boys won't have him around as they grow up, variety is the spice of life, in people and in places.
I still have a hard time believing that my brother is gone, not really ready to talk about that, I still have not reconciled myself to the fact. So many he left in mourning, his wife, children, grandchildren, my mother, brothers, sisters.
Death happens so often, it's reported on the news daily, murders, accidents, wars, entire planes disappear, there's just an emptiness left behind for those who loved the departed, it will not be filled by anyone else, and that is OK, painful, but OK.

Spring break better start improving soon, I'm tired of sad things. Spring time is about life and beauty and joy, embracing the new and looking forward. So out into the mountains for awhile to cleanse and embrace things, clear my thoughts and smile and love and enjoy LIFE!

I didn't post this until after we got back from spring break, I felt a little suspicious