Tuesday, December 9, 2014

the world's only realist

“He never even suggests that pain will be banished from the world. Still less does he exalt himself above it in transports of pity or enthusiasm. With customary realism, he looks it straight in the eye; he never loses courage, never grows tired or disappointed. The sympathetic, all-comprehending heart of Jesus Christ is stronger than pain."
--The Lord, Romano Guardini

You understand-
your realism is stronger than any other, harder truth.
And the harsh breaking of it hurts my heart,
as it runs along the train tracks,
squeaking like nails across steel.

The tenderness of the lights
is like a punch to the guts.
The sweetness of the music
is the sound of scissors snipping,
severing our last life-line.
I watch the words fade into the clouds
like I watch the world's last ship
fade into the waves,
mounting higher,
gaping aquatic Rockies,
bound to swallow us whole.

And so I take the very last poem
and dip it into the salty trough of water,
just as a wave crests to meet my hand,
and watch as the very fragile paper--
more delicate than you
predicted it would be--
succumbs to the rippling
fingers of water
that rush through its fibers,
ripping the ink from the weaving,
tearing the words from the web,
and running with them,
back into the ocean.

Reality's a cruel mistress,
but I have dodged her
slings and arrows long enough.
I steel myself for the very worse,
screw up my resolve
to just below the sticking place,
leaving a small thread
of space
for you to have some leeway.

With a sigh,
the sonnet sinks beneath the
roiling plain of stormy blue.
And I watch,
as it floats past my reach,
and back to you.

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