Life insists

on patience

but once I have arrived

at a destination

how can I be content

to wait outside?


My heart falters mid-air

clips the rim of the wastebasket

and falls to the floor

with an unsettling squelch.

She will leave a stain no doubt.

But isn’t that what we all want

to leave something behind

when we are gone

and haven’t the impulse

to make anything new?


I watch her sputter and turn.

Everything hurts,

your absence,

my disenfranchised life,

even the crescents

at the ends of my fingertips

from scraping so long

at the same intractable walls.


I am afraid of my life,

afraid of my heart 

because even on the outside

she has a knack for drawing me in.

The butterflies in my stomach

are made of wire.

They jab and tangle.

They perforate my insides

whenever they spread

their amature wings.


I don’t want to die

voluntarily incarcerated.

I don’t want to go

another moment

without knowing you.

The road between us

has yet to intersect but still

I love knowing that you are out there

savoring and scavenging

under the same mutable vault as I.