These two, one dark haired and wide shouldered

the other turquoise eyed and bird boned

they are the future, and the past

their footprints are first, and last

my back doesn’t hurt this New Year

I am carrying more but letting go with equal fervor

or perhaps it is the chair, a good chair I think

one hewn with time, spells and ancient things

perhaps it is the absinthe; I had given up drinking

that sounds an awful lot like an alcoholic speaking

more a dry drunk with the penchant for more

who wields self-control like a light saber and somehow

manages to hold on when the boat scolds to capsize

then I turned like the full moon into a sliver, then a half

centuries unwound, folded in books read and put down

I drank to that and to ancestors and fables and Albanian poetry

I drank to the warm embrace of Winter, where leaves hardly bother

to shed, knowing the sun will make its way back as fast

as Fantastic Mr Fox

this boundless glass, tilted in toast, milky reminder

why absinthe was banned for poets and artists

a pretention, a laugh, the man sitting next to me, once stranger

asks my age and guesses 32, then he is looking anxiously

at his wife walking toward us, a slight tilt, in us all

there is a waxing and waning, my longings shifting

the aches I used to bind with ribbons, have gone deeper

becoming part of my wood, those things we cannot change

so we bide time we do not have, until

the ache is a language and we let it roam loose

away from us, and all the regrets tumbling like unwanted glass

given at a brief wedding, light eccentricity

flickering like downed power lines wet with fever

you never married me, I didn’t seek ownership, nor it seems

those things I was so certain I must possess, even family

even memories, I am emptying my hands of longing

turning to the silver moon and asking

what do you want of me now? What do you need?

And if Jung was right about the second epoch

then give me the strength to serve and be decent

for this fox sheds her red coat in bare Winter branches

like a pair of lost mittens will act as guidepost

I no longer long for you as once, yet

kindness is written all over and tender

is this night pouring forth a new year

the children don’t know it yet

or perhaps it was they who taught us

to consider our foibles before they

become too unwieldly

and in their limber play

they beckon

come, come, don’t you know?

It is never too late, for all things

to be renewed.

3 Replies to “Deux jeunes filles”

  1. I can’t even begin. But my “boundless glass, tilted in toast” is here for this fathomless, filigreed offering. Happy New Year 💫

  2. There are more rites of passage
    than we mark with special names
    or set up as mile stones
    they pose questions
    what is of value
    to carry further
    what is useless baggage
    what is just trash
    and the child always there
    by example of limber play reminds
    bend without breaking
    step lightly on new paths
    fall laughing
    dance to new tunes

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