present tense

unprogram yester-
day, its yellowed heavy
footprints. reset, re-
the borrowed air
he gave you in fistfuls
until sighing it drips
purified by sleepy gasps
of oblivion.

never was a forever; gold
greened with a patina
of rust-encrusted openings,
tetanus in a tumbler
you needn’t
carry with you
though the weight
pounds systolically
after your shadow
like a one-legged man
left behind
at the bus stop: lub-dub,
lub-dub, crutches
on hot cement, a coronary
noose you’ve
slipped up and over,
to land
on two feet, square.

you needn’t carry it with you,
the whiplashed flagellation of
if only,

up the slopes of
tomorrow’s mornings
and into your first
real today
in years.

just talking to myself

now that you’ve broken through the glass,
shattered your soul-boundaries into
thousands of rough edges
and seen the ocean waiting on the other side,
breathing feels here so borrowed,
a heavy wet nostalgia and
mildew on skin that bruises too easily.

put your small hand in mine and unwrinkle your forehead;
the tide may be coming in but
we can still build castles out of the sand
that remains.