when was the last time somebody listened to your heart beat?
the last time somebody listened to the way
your stomach rumbles when you’re not-that-hungry?
when was the last time somebody remembered that you have
a freckle on your ring finger, or that you’re afraid
a ring will cover it up?
when was the last time somebody sat
near you in the shade and sighed because isn’t
life just perfect right now and you
smell the coffee and even the grass and an-
ts crawling on your hands only make
it more complete?
when was the last time someone str-
aightened your tie, fi-
xed your hair, ki-
ssed the side of your mouth to put a
smile to match your nice tie and hair?
what did your favorite tree look like when you were in second grade?
and why was there a boat underneath it, blue fiberglass,
filled with sand near the corner of the
playground by the street
where the yellow jackets lived who used to crawl all over your hands and you
knew that they felt your trust and you believed in your safety with them and
you knew they would never sting you and they never did?
but the fire ants always hurt.
what does Place de Mexico look like at 4 am after the rain when
you’ve been up all night on adderall writing
not writing poetry but writing
about poets and about poetry and about how you think Neruda wrote
because the first time you read Alturas you cried
that nobody could have done that and you still cry out
del aire al aire, como una red vacia,
iba yo entre las calles y la atmósfera
like a prayer to the yellowjackets on your hands
and after staring at a computer screen for so long
and after hearing chopin for so long
the wet asphalt and weird sculpture and hidden lightbulbs
and far off horns at the Trocadero are such a welcome
relief that they’re magical and you don’t want to walk too far
because the ET is too-perfectly-framed by the street and you want
it to be about THIS and not about THAT,
you want it to belong to YOU
when you’re cold but it doesn’t matter and
for all your nice things you still act like you’re homeless (be-
cause in half a year you will be but
you don’t know that yet)
and the water gets in your shoe and it’s time
to go back in and write the conclusion plus you
forgot your luckys up there.
Neruda I Remember You