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Saudade

I had to stop explaining you:
as dear to me as food and air,
but never one and only.
(That sort of thing won’t do, you know.)
So I learned to say less,
and finally nothing at all.

But we’ve long moved past that place,
and no maps lead back to youth.
Let people draw their conclusions.

So if I were to pay respects,
would I speak the truth,
or stiffly force a smile
and offer a convenient cover:
He was just a friend.

Rather I should say instead
you were the indulgence
of a hard-edged age.
But then they would
howl their judgments,
quite certain of their certainties.

And so I’ll mark the hour alone,
lest the absurdity break my mind
and split my heart:
dark car,
flowers,
empty shell
in a box trimmed in silver.

In my thoughts I'll pick up a card
from the rear of the church
and pretend to read it
while trying not to scream.

It’s only words.
And a bell.
Tolling a reminder
that time passes
and so have you.

M.A. falleció 6/2/16

6 comments:

Old Egg said...

Its is so good to see you posting again Ann. The sadness is palpable in the words and grief is so hard to cope with even though others think we show a brave face. I really felt this deeply.

June 5, 2016 at 2:53 AM
Jae Rose said...

I had to look up the definition of saudade - the longing and the stifling screamed through the borders of ceremony and what one 'should' do - the last verse is such a powerful ending..echoing the loss and the bell - as Old Egg says so very good to read your work again although i am sorry for your loss.

June 5, 2016 at 3:41 AM
De said...

Whew. I am deeply, deeply touched by this. First off, I love when I learn a new word, and your title is spectacular. And then the deep grief...the struggle to name it, to name the person, and who he is in your life. So well done.

June 5, 2016 at 12:19 PM
colonialist said...

Here one gets the feeling that this piece prompted the given words to do its bidding rather than the words providing the prompt. Powerful.

June 5, 2016 at 3:48 PM
Ann (bunnygirl) said...

@Old Egg and Jae Rose: I don't anticipate any regular posting at this point. Work is still taking up a lot of my time and creativity. But I could end up having more to say about M. Among other things, he was one of two people who inspired one of my fictional characters.

June 6, 2016 at 9:22 AM
Ann (bunnygirl) said...

I just realized something. He inspired TWO of my fictional characters. Most of my characters aren't inspired by anyone but M was the inspiration for two. Damn.

June 6, 2016 at 3:05 PM