Learning to float

I got up and looked in the mirror today,
eyes squinting in the sunlight piercing through the slits in the blinds,

the shape of a bird forms in the corner of my eye;
gold beak like the backs of your teeth,
and two blue crescent moons glimmering back at me,
its feathers preened and delicate,

I draw the string
flooding the room with the shower of morning

I pry each eye open,
press a contact lens onto each pupil,

…the bird has gone missing

the day passes after the other and another that you haven’t come back,

there’s more shade than sunlight now,
still, you don’t return

so it’s beginning to settle-in
that you’re no longer here,

I can’t pry my eyes open any wider,
but I can feel you nearby,

perhaps behind all the grime on this reflective surface,

or maybe it’ll help if I close my eyes,

here goes then,

teach me the silence,
I want to hear the birds tweeting

teach me how to tread,
as to avoid tripping over

teach me the veins of life through the leaves,
I want to trace the fighting genes of a seedling

there are flashes of gold in the glass before me,
is that you,
is that you?

teach me the routes of the trees and plants,
I want to carve my own path

teach me the origins of the soil, the sand and the dust,
I want to embellish this journey with the earth’s confetti

teach me the ocean,
I want to feel its salty breath on my flesh

teach me the ways of the wind,
I can’t keep thrashing against it

I want to get away
I want to get away
from myself

teach me the art of calm,
when the storm is billowing outside

teach me surrender
teach me patience
teach me softness

teach me how to breathe,
I’m choking

teach me
how to be
even when the sea churns
and we’re bobbing on the surface
unrested and uneasy

feathers are falling in the dust around me
is that you,
is that you?

our spines bend and creak
like a mast

teach me how to tac, as to avoid hurling overboard

teach me how to unravel sails
and tighten them fast

teach me the knots,
both the intricate and the quick ones

teach me an escape route
(my mind just won’t settle and)
you seem to be an expert (at escaping)

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