When I Tried Living Without You: For Those By The Beach Who Don’t Understand Poetry

(photo by kwesi abbensetts)

I once took a breath and breathed back 10 years into the sky
I once found a word on the tip of my lips that I could have not used and been completely satisfied with the rest of my day
I cut off all my hair and gave it to the birds and the ants so they may give birth in peace and find warmth in things i no longer needed
In things I could get back
So I give back
Closed my eyes and it all came back to me

fight on: for the so-called revolutionaries of charlottesville


(photo by cav daily)

i’m not going to the park to take up space
they gave up three hots and a cot in a shelter to sleep in a park to pretend to give a damn about something
who asks permission to be rebels?
who agreed on terms and deadlines to fight a cause?
where did you learn this from, pasty face
brown face?
black face would have been a bit more rowdy
friday is coming like the rain did wednesday when they decided beds were more comfortable than concrete
fight on
drink more skim milk lattes
eat more egg and spinach on english muffins
fight on, you revolutionaries
fight on
but i’m not going to the park to take up space

i prayed it happen in the fall

I prayed it’d happen in the fall. Who wants to die in the winter? And summer is to be watched over like a small child, and its death should be mourned like our own. My grandmother died yesterday. The woman who sent me to parks to play on monkey bars, essentially teaching me to let go, stretch into the unknown and grab hold of something new. The old woman who handed me a spool of thread and a needle because her sight wasn’t so great, showing me the ease of looking around the eye of the needle, and the difficulty of looking through one. In the event my relationships fell apart, this is how I would fix this at the seam.

My grandmother died in the fall. And I miss her like I’d miss my imagination had it ever left. I miss her because my soul was attached to hers at its hip, and because I drank coffee by the cups when I was 5, and just because. I lost my best friend, but I watched her stare through a window I was unable to, and I know, because of the imagination that hasn’t left yet, that she’s on the other side of that window, in some park, playing on monkey bars.

No one would understand the power of our final conversation, or the reason I cried as hard as I did for so brief, then smiled for so long. I broke, and because there is no one right now to meet the girl of my childhood, I used the needle and thread to put myself together.


For Irene Elizabeth Jones (June 1, 1932 – October 3, 2011)

-darnell lamont walker