10 Seconds

For Lucy & Cory

Lucy & Cors Wedding 2

I met you in a strange land

Full of fireworks, bing long and awed faces

Thrown together, our sanctuary grew

An island of foreigners in a sea of locals

We could easily have become friends

Conveniently losing touch when we returned

To our western reality

Instead, we chose to become family

Playing Phase 10 on your porch

— Not at all competitively, of course —

While peeking through laundry to people watch

Singing 1950s ballads with befriended gangsters

Crying, laughing, cheering, hurting, hoping

Occasionally choking on the smell of stinky tofu

I remember sitting on your bed

One lazy afternoon

Watching you sort through your collection

Of definitely-legal DVDs

While also sweeping the floor

You exchanged glances briefly

Then went back to your respective duties

You weren’t even near each other

But the love expressed in that 10 seconds

Was more palpable,

More potent

Than anything from legend or the silver screen

In such a quiet moment

I witnessed soulmates




how can i just

shear off my emotions

with scissors?

pretend like,

because theres no us anymore,

then everything i felt

is now voided&purged.

all those nights you curled up beside me

or held the world at bay

or just looked at me in that way you had

now are just


so what,

am i supposed to put

barbed wire around my heart

and ruthlessly set up watchtowers

guarding against any stray longings

escaping intimacies & jailbreak jealousies?

there are no ivory towers handy

for me be locked away in until i’ve healed

theres nothing

but what we used to be



out from under my arms


tasting copper in my lips

lips that once knew yours

before they became

more likely to twist

far away, underneath mine

our stretching scars

our mutual coverup

stretching worn between us

we tended our pages

with the yellow journalism of denial

somewhere along the way

you lost your faith in me

and i started to see you only

through tainted lens made brittle


but i love you still & i can only hope that will be enough

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