I can find inspiration anywhere and everywhere…a few months ago, my boyfriend told me about how two of his father’s cats went into the forest and didn’t come back. I’ve carried this sad little piece of knowledge around with me since then. Recently I read a short story about a man whose wife was in a coma…and today this poem was born.
Absence Of Wakefulness
The cat disappeared. She ran into
the woods and didn’t come back.
I tell you this while tracing the lines
illustrating your soft palm like scratches
made in sand with the tip of a piece of driftwood.
I imagine if I were telling you this
and you would be awake.
I imagine your voice becoming thick,
like you were holding a fistful of soil in your mouth.
I imagine tears blanketing your eyes,
your face flowering red with sadness.
You have been hushed now
for one month and nine days.
I miss the melody of your conversation,
how your attention would melt from
one thing immediately into another.
If you wake up, you need never stop talking love.
I will listen until our spirits leave
these delicate jars.
I cleansed your crystals yesterday,
with a glass bowl filled with salt water.
I remember when you last did it.
It was the hottest day of summer.
We’re coming close to Halloween now,
the apples are starting to turn on the tree,
to soften and fall.
You always loved this time.
Your mood tuned into the colder months.
It’s when you smiled the most.
I remember the last thing I said to you,
that it was too early to get a pumpkin.
I remember how your smile fell like star.
I remember how my stomach turned in on itself,
and I tried to pull my words back, but you
had already slammed the door.
I have one hundred pumpkins at home,
each carved, each with its own face, waiting
for your patient hand to light them into being.