i love april, not only because it follows in the footsteps of march, and not only because it is spring, but because it is national poetry month.
every morning, right after i wake up, i make tea and write in my journal for an hour. then, i check my email. in my inbox, every morning of the month of april, i find several messages containing poems that have been delivered to me overnight, waiting for me to open them… and read them. “a poem a day.”
oh, what a treat! what a joy to click on a message, like i’m tugging the ribbons on a gift, and plunge into the psyche of another! what bounty for humanity!
i am reminded of something mark strand, a wonderful poet, once wrote: “ink runs from the corners of my mouth. there is no happiness like mine. i have been eating poetry.” indeed! this is my experience every morning. a mild intoxication… a quiet satiation… as i feast on poetry… and irish breakfast tea.
what wonderful company, and what profound communion!
We sat in the back seat, you and I, chatting about one thousand distant memories. I watched your lips while you spoke. And how you lied… so flagrantly! Did you forget that I was there, too? Did you forget that I experienced all of those events… that I was an uncontestable, undeniable presence inside the perimeter of those realities?
You wrapped all of your lies in oceans of tissue paper, and all I wanted to do was tell you to release yourself from this fictional past. But then… what was I searching for but someone who could share my memories with me… my memories as I remembered them… my memories as I wanted to remember them?
Your breath mated with the gentle hammer of the rain as you spoke. We rode a bump on the road… a mere hiccup in our already asynchronous flow. I found myself wondering… What is it I despise about this moment?And, what is it in you that I dislike in myself? I wanted to ask you, What is it you’re searching for? Instead, I said, “Do your eyes change color when you cry?”
You looked at me like you thought I wasn’t paying attention… like you wanted to say something. You looked. And that was all.
How immeasurable the loneliness that inhabits indecision!
last night, i finished reading (for the umpteenth time) la naissance du jour, by colette. she gives such flight to women. she gives such plenitude to what it means to be a woman. she gives such hope, such reality, such truth… such bones… to who we are. there, in her words, is the promise that we are not only what we have been defined as being. we are not only the roles we are expected to play. we, too, are human. we, too, are flawed… imperfect. and, how magnificent our imperfections!
i have been reading extensively, these days. reading… and walking… and writing (without even feeling like posting because that steals from my time spent truly living) and… just being inside of this life… and how it feels… and what it means for me. my eyes are mirrors... and these mirrors are reflecting what they see… have seen… of words… and truths. words float in my head like clouds in formation. words shoot across immense fields of distance like silver stars in the blackest sky.
how filled with grace this life is!
today. i have a plan.
on this elegant spring morning, i will get dressed.
i will get into my car.
i will drive myself to the counseling center where i’m interning.
oh, to think that in just a few minutes i’ll be driving down the highway to get there… my mug, filled with hot darjeeling tea, sitting in my cup holder… my speakers blaring out my favorite notes from vivaldi… bled from the throat of cecilia bartoli.
my steering wheel will be my compass of purpose… guiding me there.
and once i’m there…
i will collect all of my belongings… including my tea mug rimmed with copper kisses from my lips.
i will step out of my car and into the openness of the day.
as my shoes touch the asphalt, i will start to tell myself how unfortunate it is that i have to be inside on such a burningly beautiful day (because that’s just part of the formula).
but then i will remind myself of how fortunate i am to be in a place where i love to be… doing what i love to do.
i will walk to the building with the sun billowing against my shoulders and a smile spreading my shimmering lips apart.
i will step into the building and feel the familiarity of the place wrap softly around me.
i will walk down the long hall, while admiring the art nouveau pieces hanging on the walls, and into my office.
i will put my keys, my handbag, my tea, on my desk.
i will sit down for five minutes of self-gifted quiet before allowing the madness of the day to sweep in.
my hands will wrap around my mug of warm tea as my eyes drift to the large bay window that looks out into the courtyard.
i will notice the heavy oak trees trembling in the breeze, the spring blossoms swaying in the shadows of newborn shrubs.
i will clutch my mug tighter, and i will lift it to my lips for a sip of warmth.
i will recall my ‘unfortunate vs. fortunate’ debate… and with my spirit wide open… i will smile at my own naïveté.