I remember those days

easily because there was only one way forward, then

no memory to stop you running the trail

and look back.


He has sat long here, for his friend, waiting on the dock's farthest seaward edge.  On the south border of this port town, hung legs into the tide's break, he watches the queue of ships stretch in hundred meter intervals out there on the world's crust, waiting to come to port.  They all experience the evening together, the act of a monarch sun relinquishing its seat till day and night are equal, and we all are shepherded into the jurisdiction of that cold stone's glow.

His sandals lie just inside the door to his home.  Ragged, they are painted the trace of his foot by four years of oil and wear.  He steps them on each day as evening comes into view and turns toward the water.

He does not count months or tally seasons on his wall.  This is not the sort of thing on which a person should hang burden like expectation or schedule.  The clock in his chest does not tick in elucidated terms but keeps its watch, nonetheless.  At its urging, whether a month or a year in time, he'll return to the water and wait for the sea to return his friend.   Then, he'll take him in, help him back into legs for the land, and they'll start an unpacking of their own, not unfamiliar to a port like this one.

I Carried Your Name Four Years First

one spring, i won a pile of books
which i did not read, but kept

and carried from state to state,
four years later i found a poet

who crawled inside of me and sat down
on a cool stone veined with evergreen leaves

near white water
to tell me of all the things i ought to admit about myself,

i watched him pound them out of the boulder
with a chisel of marble he said he found in Greece

with the woman who'd wrote the poetry
i did not read,

after he waded into the river
having warned me he wouldn't return,

i opened one of the pile:
For Jack Gilbert

It Was Like Being Alive Twice

Laymen's Arrow of Time

One cannot curve space without involving time as well.  Thus time has a shape.
- Stephen Hawking

he identifies the clay bricks that build time and pats them
to soften and stretch their passing

by this he fingers the temporal fabric of which everyone feigns knowledge
and keeps count the wrinkles in it that so please him

his weight is to overhear the condolences passed from tree to yellowed leaf so he
does not pour out his minutes in buckets of replicate seconds