Imperfect Words (a poem)

If I ever lose you,
words will rush to comfort,
but no one—
will know—
what to say.

Even I.

Words—
my usual source—
words—
of relief—
will rush forward—
stop at the gate—
mourn—
outside—
where
once—
I stood—

with you.

Better to write the sad words now,
while we can read them—
together.

You think it’s crazy?

Think—
how we’ve shared
everything.

Could it be otherwise?

And think—
if I go first.

Find your silence
standing with mine.
Hold it—
let it hold you.

Then—
find these words
bereft—

read them,
correct them,
enjoy them,
as you always have,
while you sip
our favorite tea.

Take them with you,
see them, hold them,
on a printed page—

hold it, fold it,
over and over
absentmindedly—

and see,
whenever you open it,
the words—our words—
still there.

You may write onto the margins,
write onto the back,
then wish you hadn’t changed a thing—
wasn’t that our life?

Whatever lines
we write,
you know,
can’t make us ready
for what comes
between—

In Case of Earthquake,
How to Prepare—

No guide is ever enough—

for quake—
or especially—

gentle falling—

of sprinkled
earth.

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