Wednesday, August 31, 2011

For Matt

Some of you may know that Eric and I lost our best friend to suicide on August 15th.

For Matt
Days later
and you’re still not here.
We catch ourselves waiting, you know.
The ring of a phone, the ping of an in-box.
Who knew that the center of a human heart could cramp like this
Or that the empty would find us
on the way to the grocery store, driving under these timeworn oaks
in a pair of sunglasses sitting on the counter
in a shopping list left near the edge of the sink.  

Remember when we
went paddle boarding ate fried snickers at the state fair ducked out for Chinese walked the dogs sat in the sand the three of us, watching the full moon bathe itself in the Carolina ocean?
Now dead-lines come and fall away
nowadays words do not stir me,
we avoid each other in the darkness, in the deadness
in the blank spaces where language won’t come
or withers away even though
nothing stops
when you pull of at an exit
the cars pass, the hours tick by
people just
ache or smile or fall in love
with out you.

You would have seen Eric and I
heads together, leaning like young trees
in the storm of your leaving
and the shaking of our heads no no no. There are phone calls to be made and we need to make them. This is good because later, when it sinks in, there is nothing but silence and weight. 
Eventually I pour some wine 
there is anger and I swallow it
because after all, what is left? There is nothing to do but sit in the sunroom 
drugged with sadness
no movements, or doing, til I remember
we were supposed to have dinner

In the kitchen I pull out the collards,
cut the spines even as they blur
because there is something soothing in the sound of
cutting board meets knife.
You would’ve perched on that stool by the island
Your running shoes looking weary, your calves lean and strong
grey eyes looking flat
or full
and I would have looked up and told you
you can’t find what’s missing
if you don’t stick

We'll miss you forever, Matt. I can't believe you're gone.