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Not by writing another poem
about how much you miss them.
No matter how many red-wing blackbirds
you put in it, the poem itself won’t trill.
No matter how many elephants
clomp through the stanzas,
the poem won’t make the earth tremble.
No matter your skill with language
even the ripest metaphoric blood oranges
cannot quench a very real thirst.
Pick up the phone. Press the button.
Call the one you miss.

I know, I skipped the hours
where you worry about how much time
has passed, how every silent day
becomes another thick brick
in a taciturn wall between you.
Perhaps you’ve started to believe it’s impassable.
But a call is like a wrecking ball.
One sincere hello knocks down even a thousand
days of separation with just two syllables.

What happens next will only happen next
if you clear a space for reunion,
if you pick up the phone.

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Inside

the

wall

between

us

there’s

a

very

thin

room—

let’s

take

two

chairs

and

sit

in

there—

not

on

my

side

nor

yours,

but

wholly

in

the

place

that

divides

us.

I

wonder

how

much

more

clearly

we

will

hear

each

other

without

that

wall

between

us

?

 

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Out of Obstacles

 

 

Walls will only crush you when they fall.

—Ray La Montagne, “Be Here Now”

 

 

So when

a wall forms

between us

 

let’s

reuse each

brick as cobblestone

 

we’ll build

our own path

as we go.

 

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all those walls
we built around our hearts
let’s tear them down
and reuse the bricks
to build bridges, stepping stones

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not a wall
she said,
after all
these years
what came
between you
and me
was a moat,
and she
threw off
all her
clothes
ready
at last
to swim

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for my mom

It was not
that I had a magic key.
No wrecking ball.
No crow bar.
No axe.
I suppose
it’s not even
that the walls
between us
were torn down.
It’s just that
one day
I forgot
to build them.

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