A Rest

“There bent a tree by a lake, and I watched it.”

A Rest

There have passed months now, and I listen still,
And often, after you’ve gone, I wonder
At how trembling lifeboats blown far asunder,
And whispered lullabies stricken by thunder,
Could realize, by some grace, a steadiness.

There stood a pause, when I spoke and you heard:
A rest in the usual, ongoing song.
So long a night I have lived and have longed,
My fleeting rest, for the calm of the dawn,
And for my ship to come take me away from myself.

There bent a tree by the lake, and I watched it.
A leaf breaks away from its branch, early.
It reminds you of an old story, but it has gone blurry
So, you stop for a moment to watch it fall, twirling
In the quiet breeze that shifts it from the water to the land, as the other leaves spill over,

And flow by, and then, after the silence,
The arduous music catches up to you,
And it is your turn to sing, so you do,
And it is months before the voices cease,
And you wonder why you didn’t pick up that leaf.Name I’ve heard a thousand times, and filled with foggy meanings,
You happened, but it doesn’t seem so,
For twice we met, astride a lake, and twice we broke.
A coming winter’s gales bade us revoke
Our living laughs and yawns, but winds we bore.

The flurrying clamor of midnight trams passing,
As we faced out towards that hushed, placid lake,
Could not persuade our ears to forsake
Our quiet. The water would not quake,
And Cassiopeia reminded me of an aging story.

I look up, remember, and know my life has gained
Another living ghost to haunt my sky,
Another sacred name for me to stand by,
That withering, I can conjure to help me survive
Another Cynara saying goodbye.

These are memories tied to bluesy jazz.
I don’t know how to write love poems,
So I listen to the song you have sown
And left moaning in my heart, let wild and overgrown,
With piano fragmented like our wind tossed and torn,
And her dark, soulful tones, Miss Nina Simone;
Desolate and sick, you make me, Miss Nina, of an old passion.

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