I saw a magpie, stoic
on a bare branch against a blue canvas
watching the world move beneath him
he did not flinch
and nor did I
at the thought of loss he might
be hiding in his dark beak
one, for sorrow
I couldn't help but feel the breeze
and the gentle weightlessness of fear
it does not hold me,
Monday, 1 January 2018
This year is the hardest year of your whole life.
So hard you cannot see a future most days. The pain is bigger than anything else. Takes up the whole horizon no matter where you are. You feel unsafe. You feel unsaved. Your past so present you can feel your baby teeth. Sitting on the couch, you swear your feet don’t reach the floor. You keep remembering the first time you saw a bird’s nest held together by an old shoe lace and the scraps of a plastic bag. You knew the home of a person could be built like that. A lot of things you’d rather throw away. You keep worrying you’re taking up too much space. I wish you’d let yourself be the Milky Way. Remember when I told you I was gonna become a full-time poet, and you paid my rent for three years? Best Friend, angel of the get-through, all living is storm chasing. Every good heart has lost its roof. Let all the walls collapse at your feet. Scream Timber when they ask you how you are. FINE is the suckiest answer. It is the opposite of HERE. Here is the only place left on the map. Here is where you learn laughter can go extinct and come back. I am already building a museum for every treasure you unearth in the rock bottom. Holy vulnerable cliff. God mason, heart heavier than all the bricks. Say, this is what the pain made of you: an open open open road. An avalanche of feel it all. Don’t let anyone ever tell you you are too much. Or it has been too long. Whatever guards the feet on the bridge of the song, you are made of that thing. That unbreakable note. That photograph of you at five-years old. The year you ran away from school because you wanted to go home. You are almost there. You are the same compass you have always been. You are the same friend who never left my side during my worst year. You caught every tantrum I threw with your bare hands, chucked it back at the blood moon, said, It’s ok. Everyone’s survival looks a little bit like death sometimes. I wrote a poem called “Say Yes” while I was cursing your name for not letting me go. Best friend, this is what we do. We gather each other up. We say, The cup is half yours and half mine. We say, Alone is the last place you will ever be. We say, Tonight let’s stay inside reading Pema Chödrön while everyone else is out on the town. Pema will say, “Only to the degree that we expose ourselves over and over to annihilation can that which is indestructible in us be found.” You’ll say, Pema is so wise. And I’ll say, Yes she is, And we are too. Angels of the get-through.
- Andrea Gibson