June 19, 2009

Stolen from Mary Oliver

This poem is ripped off from Mary Oliver's "When Death Comes." Her poem has always inspired me, and someone close to me will be leaving my life in a few months, and so I used her work as a template to explore my own feelings about the loss of someone important.

When November Comes

When November comes
like the slowing of a pulse
when November comes and lands the plane

to take you away, and roars the engines so I cannot hear goodbye
when November comes
like romance gone stale;

when November comes
like forgotten memories

I want to step through the door full of certainty, knowing:
that neither of us will forget what happened here.

And therefore I think of each second
as something worth preservings
and I catalogue even the silent sips of tea
and I take notes on each facial expression,

and I think of each conversation of a poem, as intricate
as a villanelle, and as mesmerizing,

and each kiss a journey into amazement,
tending, as each kiss does, toward breathlessness

and each touch an explosion of joy, something
worth tattooing on my skin.

When it's over, I want to say: in our time together
I was a student of all possibilities
I was the teacher, guiding myself onto a higher plane of knowing.

When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of our time something significant, and tangible.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply dissolving from your world.

1 comment:

Miss Mapp said...

Dorla this is so moving and really beautiful. Thank you for putting it up. And I'm sorry to hear your news.