When we Thaw

It is starting to feel like spring time again, and I have to say I have really missed the sun. Here is a little something I wrote several years ago, but somehow still resonates with me today in how I’m feeling. Ever since my dad died, I feel almost as if I have stopped moving, frozen in time as the world keeps spinning. I keep working, talking to people, doing everyday chores, smiling, but inside I feel as if everything has come to a screeching halt, and only inertia is pushing me forward. Waiting for something to shake me loose…


Everyone talks about bones

and birds and flying and falling.

Everyone talks about love and moonlight

and kissing the creases of warm skin.

No one talks about the water

in the river that decided

to stop moving a few days ago,

or the clouds that haven’t lifted

from the sky in months;

or my heart that’s been inaudible

because my fingertips

can’t measure the murmurs anymore.

I know that it’s winter and the cold

laces everything with frost.

I just never thought my heart

would need to thaw

with everything else

that iced itself over.


My lips stay warm in winter months

but the nerve endings behind them

crawl back inside to rest in a web

of synapse behind my eyes somewhere.

They move and they talk

and they press against your lips,

but they can’t remember

what it used to feel like.

What it felt like when a spark

traveled from one mouth to the next

and turned my brain to jelly in my skull;

 what warm and wet tasted like.

I tried standing outside in the storm last night

with my mouth wide open to see if lightning

would strike me right through the middle.

Maybe then the electricity in my body

would react with yours again.


I’ve been watching myself breathe

for a while now, watching my chest go up

and then down again as if my bones

can stretch and contract beneath my skin;

watching my belly rise and fall

like a rolling ocean wave.

I am listening to the air moving

inside of my lungs and I wonder what happens

to the air that just gets stuck

swirling around in the bottom forever.


I’m tired of comparing myself

to a bird that can fly but doesn’t know how

when I don’t have wings to begin with.

I just have a pair of stubby shoulder blades

that stick out too far

and I fantasize about the sky all day.

Maybe I should start comparing myself

to a different kind of bird

so I can stick my head in the dirt

and wait for an earthquake

to shake something loose.



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