For a Year

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(I wrote one poem a day for a year here:, this was written on Day 365)

Once a day for year, I wrote poems about you.
I wrote odes to your blue eyes and compared them to
oceans and the sky.
I wrote about the golden flowers that rained from
treetops and fell between the gentle
strands of sunlight in your hair, on a
painfully picturesque day in June.
I compared you to saints and claimed
you were more worthy of heaven's gates,
disregarding every trace of blasphemy
I spoke.
I made references to factories and assembly
lines without getting my hands dirty,
as though the parts of my mouth were only exhaust.
I questioned every word you ever said.
I compared myself to insects and spokes of dead presidents.
I tried too hard to emulate Cummings.
I spoke of Heaven and Hell like they were
just cities on a map, near Poughkeepsie
or Hackensack,
and I'm still no closer to finding either.
I thought rain was baptism and still do.
I soaked so many of my words in metaphor
they began to lack purpose.
I became more aware of the world's chaos through picket lines
and oil spills, to the point that I was able
to forgot about your figure in a sundress
for more than a couple of minutes.
I compared us to George and Ginger, Rick and Isla, Romeo and Juliet,
and The Cleavers.
I confused fate with hope more than a dozen times.
I couldn't sleep at night, and still don't.
I retold the flight of Icarus, as if we grew up together and he was the first kid
on my block to pop a wheelie.
I caged monsters, coyotes, and diabetic dragons
between the bars of periods and commas.
I found mortality on my swingset and still
get nervous seeing shadows dance beneath moonlight.
I saw a thousand other girls that looked just like
you and wasn't satisfied with any of them.
I compared myself to hard men, struck by tragedy,
thinking heartache could only be loss.
I wrote about another girl I once shared affection for,
thinking she nursed the fate
you neglected.
I was the puddle on your porch,
and the holiday chocolates in your pocket
in Winter.
I talked about us not talking and my distaste
for Pound.
I made a resolution to forget you by New Year's Day
and kissed no one the night before.
I listened to too much Ryan Adams
and named a poem after his album.
I served Mr. Prufrock his coffee and tea,
claiming pages Eliot didn't write for me.
I called you a liar, and lied to myself more.
I searched for home and warmth, and I'm still
not sure I've found much of either.
I fell for a girl in my Shakespeare class
and never said a word to her.
I watched my cat become a thief
of clothing and sheets.
I held the other girl again, and it didn't feel right.
I scattered myself among junkyards.
I dropped the postcard you sent behind a dresser and left it.
I watched you sprint through a concert hall we both
stood in, and learned how much you've grown to hate me.
I wanted to be bloodied in back alleys for your pity.
I lost my head.
I found faith again in old men kind enough
to hold a door for anyone.
I started to smell the onions my grandmother
once cooked in her famous stew,
and could almost taste love hit my lips.
I came to understand that every line was written for me

on the 365th day, I sat in the driver's seat of my car
and watched a year pass by my rearview mirror
without a single regret.

Created: Jul 01, 2010


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