The Road Home

I told myself, with the bite of 3 AM

That “cold” is a relative word

As ice clinked like martini glasses at the end of my hair

Toes curling deeply into the bedrock of snow boots

Just as a plant seeks purchase on a rocky ledge

My stubbly pink roots went burrowing for warmth

And found none in the barren soil of worn out woolen socks

“If I were in Alaska,” I reminded myself quietly “This would be a Spring thaw.”

As I crunched through frozen banks of snow

Aglow with the borrowed light of moon

I distracted my shudders with thoughts of Summer

Who had rarely warmed my bed or laughter

Despite sunlight seeping through the memory of trees

It was always on a road’s cold shoulder I cried upon

Whispers in the darkness of another’s brief passage

Four footed and fleeting for the scent of my humanity

Reminding me that I am never alone

Even when I walk in the seeming wasteland

Of a snow bound, desolate path

 

I am slogging toward the sunrise

A rosy promise higher than I can reach

My white, bloodless fingers reach for it like the trees do

With their bare bony limbs naked of greenery

There is a moment of synchronicity

As the forest and I stand swaying together

Awaiting a solar reprieve

From the sharp-toothed maw of January

 

I discover my house is darker than the sky

Who is now glowing softly with a promise

I do not find echoed in my hollow heart

A muffled curse as I kick the solid oak door

Frozen to the jam, refusing to budge

My anger and sadness adding fuel to my assault

There are three dark boot prints painted on it’s leering face

Before I am successful in passing my own threshold

I look around at the wordless emptiness

That ricochets off the notebooks and those walls still without plaster

Why did I struggle so desperately to arrive here?

This sanctuary of gas station wine bottles and thrice-smoked cigarette buts?

Why have I climbed a mountain so high, that nobody can reach me?

How is it that I can hug the trees, my wallowing, the pride of a tiger

But not embrace another human being?

Perhaps every hermit who ever glimpsed eternity

Had these same thoughts of shouting it from the highest hill

Only to fall silent in the time it took them

To leave their cave to find a pencil

 

Quietly I sink into my solitude

Burrowing into piles of blankets and prose

I am testing myself, I decide sleepily

Preparing for the time I will need to walk

Where no path is willing to lead me

Tempering my spirit with fire and ice

‘Till my pen is as sharp as the blade of this patriarchy

Buried in my back

 

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8 thoughts on “The Road Home

  1. Well done, an epic, so much of this is so familiar to me, it gets a touch fierce in the end, I like it, like you brought the cascades with you into your poetry but left them behind long ago where they belong. Those games our mind plays to justify the ridiculous situations we put ourselves through…I had to laugh, and I always feel a sense of satisfaction after reading your poems, I dont know how else to describe it at the moment

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much for that. I highly respect your words and opinion, I find strange familiar echoes in your own work.
      This was a memory unearthed by some strange quirk of happenstance today and I had to write it- to scratch the itch.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So good! “Why have I climbed a mountain so high…”. It resonates very deeply. Perhaps we will be able to one day discern the the razor’s edge difference between loneliness and being alone. Press on!

    Liked by 1 person

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