Valentine. Poems. (Don’t Come Easily)




There is a place in the mountains — into the clouds — where light glows

Like electric pink fog and music plays, perhaps Erik Satie, dropping

To the earth the way icicles melt in the spring.


A feeling floats through the air — maybe it’s really an idea more than a feeling, you’re not sure — and happily

It lasts throughout the day.

For a moment you recognize — this is a true epiphany! — that so many have loved you,

And some still do, and that the very thing you wanted most

Was the very thing you were least prepared to receive.

That’s how it often works.


Today you remember your mother — of course you do! — her long fingers and beautiful nails,

And how she held you first. First. She. Held. You. First.

No one can take that away from you.

You don’t have to be in some other place today.

Nor be someone else. Nor love someone else. Nor accomplish one more thing.

That B you received in Senior English doesn’t matter anymore.

You are here. This is your life. Pink fog. An idea floating above your head. Your mother.


Some people think poems are nonsense. Like a candle burning at an empty table. Or a  lifeguard

Watching a beach after everyone has gone home. But tonight, as if for the first time,

Take a breath and look at the moon and remember your place in the world.

How bright your star. How beautiful your life. How much you will be missed someday.

The moon is not full tonight. But it is still a moon. And you are still here.




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