At first you were only breezing across my surfaces
leaving a short film
a subtle tap on the shoulder memory.
I brushed you off each evening
and then I noticed you were burrowing
like a fish hook in my skin
and my heart should have sped up in fright but instead it beat out a languid N’awlins jazz lick.
And then I noticed you were spreading and coating me like coconut lotion
the plastic bottle pliant from the sun
and the heat I was storing was
The songs that I carried in my head were sung for an audience of one
and if the notes I was trying to hold were crackled and sharp as vinegar
you still listened and maybe that smoothed the edges,
sweetened the backnotes
because in the end
I only sang for you.
You were in the all of me and in the crooks and crannies
filling out and rounding the corners and then
the lights changed and the songs changed and one chair got taken away…
You burst out of me like star dust escaping a doomed sun.
I felt you go,
and tried to catch and keep some of it,
tried to hold the magic.
It sparkled in my hands for a moment
and then it was just
leaving only grit
and becoming just the stuff you sweep up.
I can’t remember the lyrics anymore and the heat is almost spent
but I think I will just sit here and wait
for the music
and the magic
For that brush, that breeze, that tap on the shoulder.
Or for the dust to find
and reclaim me.