i should not have been so happy for a cold snap
that last week of may in kentucky but i knew
i’m not okay / not yet /i can finally say out loud
in my heart / in my soul / deep in the marrow
of my bones i wasn’t ready to spend more than
15 minutes of any day on that porch by myself /
alone with my thoughts / just me and my coffee /
i’m not okay / not yet / i should start doing better
deadheading the pink knockouts we got last year
at the home depot / or tending the mums we bought
to support the softball team and planted on a whim only
for two of them to survive / revive / return this year
i’m not okay / not yet / i’ll just let myself wonder
which color of mums will sprout like it matters / it doesn’t /
i need to go to sunshine soon and pick out the impatiens
you loved in almost every color but i’ll do it alone without
your discerning eye & argumentative acumen in the car
to convince me that we need to have both pink and salmon
i’m not okay / not yet / i will be fine & the garden okay
i saved eggshells for months / collected their broken bits
in the plastic pork rinds barrel / same as the one we store
white half runners in for shucking / i’ll bake & grind them
[the eggshells / not the beans] to feed the soil this weekend
or maybe spread the chores out over the next week / breathe /
i’m not okay / not yet / i can only guarantee
i’ll take plenty of breaks to rock on the porch / pray / listen
to the grackles & jays / windchimes / watch the house finch
& family who’ve made their home in the license plate bird house
we hung outside dad’s window so he would have more to watch
than the day’s drifting clouds /the night’s twinkle of stars
i’m not okay / not yet / someday
i love this
Great work here, especially enjoyed the use of slashes in form.
It is okay to not be okay.
Well caught feelings, Jay.
The closest equivalent of this one, for me, was one of the hardest to put on a screen. You did so with beauty and memory and longing.
Wonderful tribute! I also love the use of the slash – it conveys the brokenness of life/the day. It interrupts thought and action. Used very well here.
beautiful, jay. so many rich sounds of love that you capture here. so many invisible paths of grief/ acts connecting blood. 🌹