Lilypads

Love is space and the space between
and ease, a friend said to me yesterday, is rare
maybe the way the sunrise is rare
never the same twice and no effort

I recently spotted a heart in the mud
frozen or thawing
could be the shifting of continents
as we dream ourselves awake
the space between breaking open
and coming together
subtle

A poet I loved perceived the space between
the rowboat and the dock
as where poetry lives
and for a time, I lived there too
liminal and seemingly lost
grasping the groundlessness for the muddy bottom

It was there in my flailing that I surrendered
to the natural buoyancy the water offered up
with no expectation of payment
no demand for acknowledgement
the free gift of floating
the sky an anchor

And one day I would touch down
the soft floor solid enough
to stand and sink and rise simultaneously
neither walking nor swimming
nor stuck
water dripping from my bare skin
strong again, though you know
nothing happens suddenly, not even the things
the happen suddenly

Then it was the empty boat that beckoned
so I climbed in
oars dipping but not disrupting
the thick lilypad gardens
gliding around the edges of this body
like the pond
where we were children
and time moved slowly

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