That old shell of a Chevy
in the field down by the creek
became our base, our fortress,
our refuge and our shelter.
In all those days of story
even innocence placed its
lost loves where we met, shyly,
so long ago.
we parted, came together
and parted gently again.
We grew there. We grew up there.
We grew roots in our minds and
hearts there that dig and search the
soil there still, search for meaning,
twine into leaning loves and
tilted, quizzical glances,
looks that say, “Maybe….again.”
And now the grass grows up through
the floorboards. Rust falls to dust
the earth in a halo all
around. The blood of the place
runs into the soil—our blood,
our time, our labors of growth,
the things we do and did that
can not be counted as work
and cannot be priced, all those
lessons lost with the rust, leeched
into the soil, washed from us
like the sweat from our bodies,
like the mud from our bare feet
when we ran like animals
through the field and through the creek.
The rain patters on the roof,
singing us softly into
the night and we sleep. When dawn
comes there are bare drips from the
roof onto the old rearview
mirror. They roll around the
edge to curl under and fall
down and splash on the dashboard
where we put the candles the
night before. And we come back
to this place, to this comfort.
I come here and you are there
before me, that look on your
face that says, “God, you're silly!
Silly for coming back…..but,
here I am again, waiting.”
Time and time, and—
God! How it hurts
to watch it go,
to feel it lose
its grip on you.
This space remains. This space is
never the same. This space is
never the same shape. It will
not fit us anymore.
We were in the room next door,
the one that,
when you enter,
find yourself below ground,
looking at the feet
of passers-by on the street
but you don't worry about that,
about how you have found yourself here.
You don't think about how it doesn't
make sense because it does
at the time.
In that moment its dark energy rings truer
than the dark. It's dark and dingy like you
imagine a bar in a building’s basement should be.
It has been abandoned,
raided and forgotten
with still uneasily spoken
spirits that might be raised.
Eighty years ago
a thick layer of light brown
dust settled, coating everything,
taking the room and everything in it
and turning them in tones of sepia
with the sounds of the street coming
filtered through dirty glass
There is music that comes and goes,
music that no one is listening to anymore,
faded laughter like lost loves and stale cigarettes,
like slowly yellowing paper (we can see it turn
before us, we watch it happen there on the window sill,
the paper curls and crumbles).
Shadows pass and the passers feet
become the passing of the light.
From the room, a quick, lonely movement
catches in the corner of the eye like a cobweb
that you can not squeeze out.
The room can not decide which floor it wants to be
so it becomes the floor, and you are
flattened along with it. You have
become a shadow of who you are,
your own shadow that you step on.
This is a time when I was alone.
This is a place I have been before.
This is a time when I was not afraid
of any thing or any one
but of time's not passing,
of dead flies that have stopped
accumulating in the windows.