Sitting in the Archive on a lovely fall day, I found the perfect words of how autumn touches me:

I would say this for the leaves:
That they comfort me,
And though my heart is heavy,
Such light in pools of color below,
Such light in shimmering color above,
Such a soft richness of quiet turning
Lifts and blesses my eyes
That I might turn like them
Upon a pliant stem
Until the clean break at the neat crescent place,
The edge designed for letting go,
Sets me free to drift,
A bright gash against the dark air.
And seeing grey limbs appear,
Tree by tree like naked bones
Drying in the lingering sun,
I too feel the downward pull of the sap
Hidden and waiting to transform.
~Mary Chivers


This week, last year, already a year, you were still here. You were leaving, but some piece of you was here. I don't understand where you went, nor do I understand how maybe you went nowhere, but plainly ceased to be. I've waited for a year now, to have some understand it. I've went through a few days here or there when I didn't even think about your absence. There were days when I would catch myself realizing that I was chasing some fantasy of calling you to tell you about something that happened or somthing I saw. Those moments were like emotional exclamation points that floored me, knowing that I would never be able to do that again.
All of this, I live with each day, and I get by.
What it is that always tears me into pieces and breaks my heart all over again is to hear John Lennon's voice. It transports me back to that room, with you, playing his music for you, trying to find what I thought would give you some last feeling of peace in this world.
A year ago you were dying. A year ago I still could hold your hand and it was warm.
I still miss you so terribly.

Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise

Black bird singing in the dead of night
Take these sunken eyes and learn to see
all your life
you were only waiting for this moment to be free

Blackbird fly, Blackbird fly
Into the light of the dark black night.

Blackbird fly, Blackbird fly
Into the light of the dark black night.

Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise.


Turning the Page

Where do you think I've been?

I've been spending many hours here; getting ready to let you, and anyone who loves a good book, through the front door.
The Archive
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Let it be for something

This is what death is, most of all: everything that has been seen, will have been seen for nothing. Mourning over what we have perceived.
-Fran├žois Wahl


Two threads from Rilke

One month has gone by. Full of days, and broken-sleep nights. The hole is still here, it is no smaller and no less painful. I think I do feel a little numb more frequently. Yet still no comfort. I miss you.

I love the dark hours of my being.
My mind deepens into them.
There I can find, as in old letters,
the days of my life, already lived,
and held like a legend, and understood.

Then the knowing comes: I can open
to another life that's wide and timeless.

So I am sometimes like a tree
rustling over a gravesite
and making real the dream
of the one its living roots

a dream once lost
among sorrows and songs.

Everything is far
and long gone by.
I think that the star
glittering above me
has been dead for a million years.
I think there were tears
in the car I heard pass
and something terrible was said.
A clock has stopped striking in the house
across the road...
When did it start?...
I would like to step out of my heart
an go walking beneath the enormous sky.
I would like to pray.
And surely of all the stars that perished
long ago,
one still exists.
I think that I know
which one it is--
which one, at the end of its beam in the sky,
stands like a white city...


While My Heart Gently Weeps

My father, who was always my Da.

I do not know how to stop speaking to you, but I do not know how to start, knowing that this will be a one sided conversation. I cannot stand the thought of you out there, waiting for me to start either.
I was always careful about my beliefs, especially about the big things, like death. I have never had an opinion that was fully formed about it, nevertheless, I did have certain ideas. Thoughts on what happens as that last breath leaves the body, where does that life go? What is left, is anything?
All that I held to be somewhat true, in theory, has crashed down around me, and I'm left standing in the midst of all the shattered pieces, and there is nothing. No answers, no comfort, just a huge gaping hole that starts hurting at my heart and moves through me in waves, through my eyes, my brain and my lungs. I am not believing that you are truly gone, but I have no proof of that, only my hopefulness that I'll wake up and be able to call you. I stare at my hands, and see your hands, surely that can't be what people mean when they say you will always live in me. It only makes my hands feel like an echo that never finds its depths, or a response on the other side of the mountain.
All my thoughts of you unravel, and come back to the last days. Watching you by the window, trying to imagine what you were seeing, were you dreaming backwards? I want to remember all the stories, but can't seem to unless someone else is telling them. I have dreams, over and over, of trying to still hold your hand, and being in that room, trying to still talk to you. I walk through trees, trying to see for you, to give you the world that I see, now that you do not have your own.
But all of it feels like a ruse, I cannot understand where you went. And for now, I cannot accept it. Maybe in time, but for now I am not ready to say goodbye.
I breath through the waves of loss, at moments it is almost too much, but really it is never too much. I just keep breathing



I often think about how my family, maternal and paternal ended up in the town I was born in and where I spent my formative years, until I got the hell out of there. Both of my grandfathers moved to the town to work at the Steel Mill in the 1950s. From California, from Kansas - places that were worlds away from this place. The Steel Mill was such an ominous fixture in the town, that growing up with it you developed a fondness for it because it was part of you and your own childish identity, it was part of the skyline and it was a landmark for knowing where you were at all times - the smoke stacks being the tallest thing around. It was with a sentimental sadness that I noted some of the towers disappearing over the years. A few were taken down when I still lived there, almost fifteen years in the past. Now, when I go home to visit, there remain just a skeletal few to hold vigil on the horizon. It's not that I think the smokestacks are a lovely part of that place, in fact it's just part of the memory I do have of this place that I usually refer as a frozen reach of hell.
If these pictures do not recall inferno-like nightmares for you, I shudder to think of where you come from. It didn't look quite like these images when I lived there, but somehow these old postcards depict, perfectly, how I feel about that place. Except, now, it's just a ghost of itself, and that is even more sad than if it were still going full-steam into the farthest reaches of hell.