Distractions wear thin;
the old thoughts settle in,
lying hot on my skin
as a brand.
Always, in my mind,
you are ten, I am nine,
and we're watching the sky
in your grandfather's field for bluebirds.
It really is home of the blues there.
I heard secondhand
that you'd up and abandoned
your shell to the sand,
to the sea.
Now, how's this for gall--
while I thought about calling,
I've spoken fuck all
to the people I thought of as family.
You'd think I was somebody famous,
to be so appalling, so shameless,
to cease and desist.
It still wouldn't absolve me of this.
What ever could?
I sat down outside,
ground my teeth till I cried,
feeling like I was lying,
Last night, all I dreamt:
you had lungs, you drew breaths,
and you claimed to be blessed
by a God who in life only failed you.
And who should know more about failure?
It's happened, as slow as a glacier,
and ten times as cold.
It's too much to ask to stay gold.
Gold turns deep red and umber;
gold leaves with strong wind and with thunder;
gold falls and gold rots inches under
a hundred close kin
who all were as gold as you'd been.