what is it to stay the same
what is it to wake up each morning
and feel like the same
girl woman person thing
with memories intact and a steady emotional barometer
(continuity of emotion is overrated in this 21st century.)
i want to live a life (mostly) without glory
i want to be just like everyone else
but we have all these neat compartments
that we dangle people over
and then let them fall
box me in with walls made of memory
call me stupid.
my brain doesn’t work right
it tells me to be different
when the rest of you are the same
but when we’re different from each other
we’re both being the same.
the ocean always changes
and yet is always the same
(it’s always there.)
will i say the same for you
or would you be different?
how many seasons have been ruined by death
the same children who wish for a white christmas
are the same kids who die driving drunk on the highways
on christmas eve, on the side streets near your house,
or are found curled up frozen on the front lawn
with breath caught in their crystallized throats
and every year when kids are praying for new video games
and all grandmothers want a sweatshirt embossed with
‘world’s best grandma’ even though it may be a lie
we’ll think of those kids shot with bullets,
how no one touched their bodies for hours where they
lay huddled up outside the school.
and when the younger kids come next year to your house
caroling and wanting to sell you cheap chocolate,
you won’t come to the door.
how silly our differences seem then,
how petty our workplace fights and family brawls
how small the world really is
how sad it is to go on living
when the dead are dead
and the last light is turned off
in a house where kids used to drink hot cocoa
and shake wrapped boxes to guess what’s inside them
how so much can happen in six, seven years
so many memories can be made
and yet it’s still not long enough,
it’s never long enough.
winter smoldered against our faces, ash gray and black lined our cheekbones–
no, that was just my cigarette. we had abandoned my car to look for warmth
and found frigid waves instead–i should’ve brought a blanket, dammit—
bottles of brandy keep the bloodcurrents flowing–i don’t drink! i yelled
over the surf and all i can remember is the sea’s shush telling me to be quiet
and i was quiet for a while, thinking about how lucky we were to be in love
where we were sitting, staring at the sea but still i was always waiting for
him to turn his head, to turn his head away from the sea, to look at me.