Life as a Language

This morning the moon is folding into
the grey static sky and I’m gripping
my cold coffee mug like it’s you
tangled in my frozen fingers

but it’s not,
it’s a wake up call.

The bitter divination of my life
lies in the cracked lines of my palms
and I’m illiterate at reading my future
but I’m great at wishing it away.

I try to speak like I understand life
so that one day I can look at the paths engraved
on my palms and know why I walked down
your road only to trip on you and walk the other way-

but no matter how many dictionaries I scrupulously search,
I can’t seem to find the answer.

it’s not in my cup of coffee,
it’s not in my palms,
and it’s certainly not in you.

I want to live
but I am certainly not living just because I am alive,
and I am certainly not living just because I can recall
every exact detail of the moments shared.

and so, it is time to continue down along
the jagged fleshy lines of my palm
that won’t give way to anything but to a map which
I cannot read.

I used to think you gave me life
and now that you’re gone
I’ve been trying to learn how to speak it.

but life is measured in moments not words,
and it is spoken with happiness not a voice,
so when I finally realized how to live

I washed away missing you with my cup of coffee,
and a hilarious fit of laughter,
and finally I was speaking life.


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