Here’s another poem that’s been in my head for a while. It began as a dream I had in Colorado last spring, so there’s that. It captivated me for days, and has clearly still lingered in my thoughts for months so it was time to say something about it. As with most of my work, it’s not really finished…I’m always changing and adding and taking away. This one I feel will lose some of the impact the more I refine it, because it is confusing and difficult and abstract and hard to grasp and it is supposed to be. Making it too simple and too defined would, I think, take away its essence. It is a stream of thought, processing through something deep and big and transcendent, so to manipulate it would be counterintuitive. Interpret it as you will. It’s meant to make you think, and probably leave you with more questions than you started with. So without further ado: New World and Old Eyes.
I got a little glimpse
Of a big life.
Another soul washed away
In an ever-growing sea.
It’s strange to think that just yesterday
You were still part of it all,
And just a day before that,
The stars in the sky
Were all inside your head,
And I could see them
Shining out from your eyes.
And all I could do is sit there and watch them fade,
Soaking in as much light as I could.
I was only with you a few hours
But in those moments
My world got a whole lot bigger
As yours got smaller.
There’s a lot in my world now
That wasn’t there before.
A lot of things entered in with us
As I helped you in the door.
You’re not in your own world anymore,
You’ve left it,
But you’ve left it to me.
And there’s a lot happening in it.
A lot of things growing
Where your feet left the ground.
A lot of green in your footsteps
A lot of flowers springing up
A lot of life in the soil
A lot of sunlight pouring down.
There’s a lot happening here
Where your presence used to be.
That’s the only thing that makes sense to me.
It’s the only thing that can make sense
When you’ve sat here like I have
Watching a world disappearing.
I wanted to snatch as much of it up as I could.
You breathed a lot of life out
And I tried to catch it.
Now I live in your world.
I feel your absence, hear your silence,
And see the empty places
You would have filled.
Now I know all the things
That are missing a little something.
The places you could’ve gone
That will never breath your air.
You left a little presence all around.
I can tell where you walked,
Hear where you spoke,
Feel where you stood.
You were never in my world.
But you let me into yours,
And I’m never going to be able to see it apart from you.
I’ll always know that you have been here.
I’ll always know you have breathed this air.
I’ll always know you sat right there.
I’ll always know you were real.
Your world is still turning
Because, even if only in the last words of a dying breath,
I got to meet you.
I got to just sit here and talk
And listen to every captivating word that you said
So that I could hear it
Before your soul left.
But I feel like the ghost here
Wandering the streets
Feeling not quite so real as I thought I was,
Not quite so real as you had been.
I feel a little lost in all that is familiar.
Looking around, everything is strange now
And the light looks different,
The shadows have changed.
There’s something that’s shifted
and I can’t figure out
If it’s my world that is different
Or the eyes I see it with.
I feel so exhausted
Waking up the next morning
After such a big change,
After everything is different.
Realizing everything that I knew before
No longer holds any weight.
I have new eyes.
Old eyes, weary eyes that have seen a lot.
I saw a lot in just a few hours.
But they are wiser eyes,
Eyes I’m glad to see through now.