Matthew Gellman

Light doesn’t have to move forward.

It can confuse itself, reroute after pausing.

The spiderweb between you and the sky

as it is wracked by rain. I spent years inside

the collapsing of the great untenable elms,

the middle C you strummed

become the sound of what had fallen.

You’d play the early morning

and I’d notice something floating

behind you, happiness, maybe, or sunlight

licking the pollen from its fingertips,

and flushed on your mattress, discussing

our families again, the split lakes

of their wreckage, I didn’t know what you meant

when you said abandoning a past

can also preserve it. Small kingdom

of takeout boxes, pale music,

the sweat greasing your clavicle,

breaking out your long coat for November —

I didn’t think it would finish us.

The light we inscribed in that room

has not abated. Has not ended for me.

I looked out the window until your face

turned silver with the train.


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