your standards are too high
you expect too much
you’ll never find what you’re looking for
you’ll set yourself up for disappointment
just take what you can get
be happy with what you have.
you get what you believe you deserve
so set expectations
set them high.
Sometimes I feel like my memory is its own separate world and all the people in it go about their memory lives while I’m stuck here in the present.
I have a feeling they all get together from time to time. They sit around and swap stories and the tales get all tangled up, and when I try to follow one thread from beginning to end I can’t because they’re all intertwined.
Sometimes I think they do it on purpose so I won’t be able to tell them apart any longer, so they stop meaning so much to me, so I’ll leave them alone. Or maybe they do it for my own good, shut me out and cut me off, because they know how much I’d want to stay if I could.
Five in the morning the moon is high,
set deep into the blue
It tastes cold and sweet and bright
they glitter down on me
but they can’t touch you where you are
They can’t reach you,
do I want to?
Night can only stretch so far.
I don’t like, and when I do
I do until it’s done
But in the night
the light feels like
it was only meant for one.
The sun will rise on a world so blue
it doesn’t even look blue to you
And there’s nothing I can do to make it
reach to where you are
so far and
no light lives forever and
the moon won’t fade for
nothing but I hope you know that
it won’t wait for
The fan is another presence in the room, his spinning rhythmic hum like breath. Sleeping breath, slow and steady and far, so far from me.
I try to match the breathing but I can’t. The farther he falls into sleep, the farther I fall away, until I lie here, eyes open, counting breaths.
It makes no difference that I can still see him, still touch him. In sleep we’re pulled apart. Different minds, different worlds, different beings altogether. The only thing tying us together is breath.
And all I hear is his, the even, spinning, soft and steady whir. Alone asleep in his world, while I’m alone awake in ours. I can’t hear my own breath above his, don’t even know if it’s there. Don’t even know how to find it. I can’t breathe, can’t think, can’t fall asleep with a breath that doesn’t match my own.
I find the rope, I find my grip.
I pull it, pull it tight.
I listen as his breathing slows to a stop.
And I take a breath.
Today is a slow and beautiful day.
I will take my time, because it is mine, and I will stretch every second to fit the size of each moment.
I will do everything at my own pace, because I can, because that’s what I enjoy doing.
Not driving slow, because I never drive slow, but sitting in my parked car outside my house, waiting for the song to finish. Letting another one play. Opening the car door and letting the sun stream in.
Walking slowly across the empty street. Stopping to smell the red rose blooming outside my front door.
Going inside and stripping off my work clothes and sitting naked at my kitchen table under a towering double bouquet of red and pink roses. Sipping my hot tea and smiling at the fact that I am home alone and it’s quiet and lovely.
I don’t even care that my throat is sore and my nose is sniffly and my head is foggy. My heart is clear and happy and wrapping itself up, tight and safe, in the time as I stretch it out before me.
There’s nothing that requires my immediate attention, no one I’m obligated to speak to, no place that’s calling my name. I can sit here, naked at my table, for however long I want, simply because I want to. Or I could lounge on my couch or climb into bed or roll around on the floor and laugh like a maniac in my hoarse voice.
I could eat potato chips for breakfast (I think I will) and I can eat breakfast at noon because there’s no reason not to.
I will do whatever I feel like doing, slowly or quickly or infinitely, because it’s my birthday and this is what makes me happy.