The shame of inability

The shame of inability

A Poem by Marie Anzalone

 

I.

We lose so much of life

in the space of not trusting;

in the waiting for planets

to align, the right moment

to be invited in, given

permission by the divine.

I should be there with you,

holding your hand through

this grief, but a pandemic and an

inability to say who you are,

to me, get in the way,

stay my hand, shorten my grip.

 

I take in the sun by day,

contemplate the rain on the roof,

by night. When my friend died,

like for you, the hardest part

for me, was there being

 no goodbye. No body, no

permission to be at the funeral.

I don’t want that for us.

 

II.

I have become an expert

at counting shadows, telling time

by the slant of sun on the garden,

knowing which bird trills

what song, from where, each hour

of every day alone in my own space.

 

I hold a doctorate in unsaid things,

I am a master of paintings for which

I never seem to have the right colors.

I hide ocean liners of passion

behind curtains woven of friendship.

I pretend to only understand half

of what I hear and see. I could write

a novel with nothing more than

spider silk, carving knives, and

garden soil. My actions tell the truth

when my mouth forms partial lies.

 

III.

To know an artist’s heart

watch how their brush or pen

caresses, strokes, massages, stabs,

or timidly approaches her subject.

 

As I am subject to you

you own most of my nights now;

I woke one morning

and a silver cord was tied

from my soul

to your midsection.

An ocean liner

was moored in my garden.

A story was demanding

to be written, out loud;

a painting came to life

in my teacup.

 

Something softened

in the way you come to me,

I almost see me now in some

lines drawn by your pen.

I drink 2 liters of liquid

a day but it is your water

my body wants to absorb,

like sunlight, like rain

in good soil.

 

 

IV

I sit here listening

to thunder and water drops

the rain sheeting off roofs.

I am ashamed that I cannot

hold your hand through your pain,

now and every night. And

I wonder- do you and I

ever sit, watching the same

river, from the same banks,

in any of our nights apart?

 

 

© 2020 Marie Anzalone


Author's Note

Marie Anzalone
translation from my original in Spanish

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Featured Review

This is incredible. So heartfelt yet so measured, and delivered with such precision of thought. You can really sense the moment in this, that you captured your feelings in a bell jar. Doesn’t surprise that this is translated from Spanish. In a very good way!

Posted 1 Month Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

This is incredible. So heartfelt yet so measured, and delivered with such precision of thought. You can really sense the moment in this, that you captured your feelings in a bell jar. Doesn’t surprise that this is translated from Spanish. In a very good way!

Posted 1 Month Ago


2 of 2 people found this review constructive.


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Added on July 8, 2020
Last Updated on July 8, 2020

Author

Marie Anzalone
Marie Anzalone

Xecaracoj, Quetzaltenango, Guatemala



About
Bilingual (English and Spanish) poet, essayist, novelist, and technical writer working in Central America. "A poet's work is to name the unnameable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start argume.. more..

Writing