Poetry/Prose, Sugar Free

Happy Endings

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Usually I need music to write

But I sit in silence tonight

Because something has been pulling me

Like thread

Finally, through the eye of a needle

Just noticed now

After 30-odd years

 

Like an eight year-old girl

Tugging on the hand of a woman almost 40

Tugging her through scenarios

She thought the gods wanted

Tugging and tugging

 

Year after year

And she thought she was older

Past all that

Just living like people do

With ups and downs

And downs and downs

And stories and fodder

For blogs and books

 

Tonight she discovered

This tugging child

Some weird flinch

In her hand

That words in a book

Drew her eyes finally

To look down

In one breathtaking moment

To see

That little fist

Strangling her fingers

 

Yes, tonight was the night

After a particular series of events

That seemed loving

Could have been more loving

Found me in the bathtub

Looking up from a book

Weaving words

Through my mind’s voice

Running films of the past

‘Or my mind’s eyes

 

Dumbfounded

Aware

The girl was right there

Always has been

Tugging at me

Only now

Looking at me

 

Like thousands of yesterdays ago

Playing out

That kermit the frog sweatshirt

Anemic face

Blue, penetrating eyes

Nerves like a rabbit

Distracted, wild

Lost, somehow

Yet stunningly lucid

 

Her hunger for love palpable

Her attention

A warm breeze of empathy

With survival-grade hooks

Save me

She could have said

 

Instead, she smiled

Looking down at an angle

Nowhere

 

Her fist squeezing tighter

Around my hand

 

I wiped my eyes

Collected myself

Asked her some questions

Began to weep some more

 

Oh, you only have two pairs of pants?

She looked down regretting her penchant for truth

 

Who are your friends here?

Well why don’t they talk to you?

What do your parents do?

Oh.

 

All I want to do is adopt her

Tell her I have nice clothes for her

That we can talk every day

When she gets home from school

 

I will make her snacks

She doesn’t have to wait until dinner

Fight over fish sticks

Tuck her importance deeper

Every night

Into her pajama pockets

 

Everybody did their best

It’s not about them, anymore

It’s about us

Now it’s our turn

 

Lucky for her

She has no choice

And neither do I

 

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