Dance to the Edges of Your Longing

I have nothing important to say.
My car is getting inspected,
later I’m getting my eyebrows threaded
for the first time.

It’s Monday. The world spins madly on.

Starbucks. A woman at her laptop
who looks like a writer I know
but I don’t know if it’s her
so I don’t say anything.
A guy who might have been
Springsteen in the 70s.

Right now, someone’s learning to read,
painstakingly.
A man is sobbing in his car, can’t let
his wife see how frightened he really is.
The appointment is this afternoon.
A woman is nursing her baby
while a toddler pulls on her pant leg.
The phone is ringing.

Where does poetry live
in the most ordinary of moments
against a backdrop of strip malls
and abandoned lots
and so much machinery
and day laborers who rose at dawn
and songs that remind you of lifetimes ago?

You already know how this will end,
with a parting that seems like the others,
nothing big, see you in a few hours.
But anything can happen
between here and there,
the first cry, the last breath.

You may think you have nothing
important to say, nothing important
to give — it’s a lie. Stop trying so hard.
Anyone lucky enough to love you
better know it.

And if they try to own you
like a pair of shoes
or use you like a gym membership
that starts out with gusto than fizzles
into the background of habitual excuses —
just no.

Just for today, dance yourself
to the edges of your longing.
See what you find there
and how it changes something in you
you thought you wouldn’t find
again.

It never left you.

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