i thought about everything,
i said.
as if thinking were a virtue.

as if trying-really-were a
pure act,
unselfish in its work.

i am remembering
the little white honda,
stick shift,
with all of us in it,
rolling backward
an accident
down the incline of our driveway
my mother trying to stop it all,
sailing into the neighbor's lawn

the last moments are calm.
i remember the supernatural lawn grass,
every blade sculpted.
the panic of my brother-
his tiny, fat, white hands
wet with fear.

the sound of the bushes
cracking, giving way,
a thousand offerings.
we emerge stunned,
blinking in the mid day sun,
a lawnmower coughing and
starting again through the humid air,
sounds from another world.

i remember everything
as if memory
were the bitter core of a golden peach

i eat when i am not hungry.

i put a bayleaf under my pillow,
for dreams.

i dream of you
in a forest-
they always look the same.
the jumble of vegetation
the lines of endless trees,
closing in like a construct.
i remember
your shining hair, in a v on the forehead.
your eyes dark when recalling something painful
and faraway,
another woman's face,
her scent,
the words of your mother,
the way night closes in quickly in the desert,
the stars seeming cold and empty,

i will never know.

i wish, now
all of those days,
i had remembered the forest,
the temperature of light
falling on the peeling bark of birches,
the names of the ferns my father taught me,
the season of green falling
from above-
the sound of water falling
from the creekbed.
all of it vast and inalienable,
so much.
so i dream you-
discrete and particular.
as if knowing
were possible.
as if you were any smaller, realer,
the trees, the soil, the living, the dead, all

this is the poverty of memory,
ringing the bell for its supper
of solitary riches--

eat your heart out,
eat you heart out,
i said.


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