If we played operation, I’d touch the sides every time just to see you react. Before when I studied a new someone something person idea I’d work from old to new, like a sequential movement through a body of work, then to now but maybe never make it back from some slightly more recent then, looking all along for first causes for later things I guess I assumed I’d get to but I’m reading Tranströmer now new to old because my friend and Teju clued me so I’m diving right in like we did twenty years “late” and I’m afraid to wash my face because I can still smell you on my skin and that’s just how I operate, as if it were all a dream and I could maybe take the bones out and still stand up fine,
dreaming all over the place.
Dreaming if I dealt you a hand it’d be esqueleto holding a simple bouquet of unidentifiable flowers I plucked delicately from my imagination because I can’t help sometimes thinking that’s where you’re from too and I’m just giving you a piece of home even if it’s thistle
or whatever decides to grow above us on the ground we’re in because I’ve sort of jumped ahead since I know it’s till death do we and even then not torn asunder just six feet or so beneath in plain pine side by side boxes with holes drilled so the worms can feast like you said and a big circle cut in the right side of mine so I can forever reach one skeleton arm over to where I end and you begin long after those flowers and weeds decompose and new ones real ones dream ones other ones grow above us, running wild
above us growing on the endless ground around and on that ground a gravestone found with the bony hand and meager bouquet engraved to mark us there, amor eterno, and I see it in squared-off capitals bare bones austere and unadorned, subtle truth overgrown by underbrush moved by whatever breezes blow over forever, forever unfinished, growing, weathered and unbeaten and I can almost inhale it
and that’s the present, that’s now as much as then, eternal, and someone a long time ago said now is all we can ever give up, whether we start with death or some other beginning but not the end, with an old that’s forever new, plucked from time, from mind, and maybe someday some brave curious strange reincarnate soul will chance upon the quiet mark we left and dig us up as part of some whole new operation.