moving, in four parts

1 I take the train in may.
In toronto I meet writers and smokers, and you say it’s a good place for an artist to be, with sultry nights that never end or perhaps that’s just how it feels sitting here with you on your lilac scented stoop till dawn
smoking reefer
changing the world
in toronto loving you inside your white dress is so easy.

2 leaving.
when at last I leave for good, I fly. I never felt prairie dirt inside my blood. It never stuck between my ribs the way you say it sticks to yours. underneath my ribs got flooded up too soon with rage
an angry god
with blind obedience
with fear
goodbye to the shop that sells my books, the theatre where I worked, with neither joy nor sorrow. I’ve left already in my heart. I’ve had my time here, inside all the houses where I’ve lived and breathed and your house too, where we lived together for a time. my daughter swears it’s haunted and of course it is, with all the hurt and blame we hurled between those stubborn walls. still I can’t say I didn’t try harder there with you than I ever did with anyone before. goodbye to you, biting back betrayal tears. I want to hear the words I love you and not wonder what’s been given up.

3 flying west.
when words you thief, words you’ve stolen from my mouth, taken without leave, have failed, what now. you’ve taken time: its absence heavy on my soul.

4 when I get out to the coast I write and write.
I send myself to everyone I’ve left including you, as though I haven’t made my mark already. I’m in some sort of limbo here, stuck between a rock and that hard place against your chest. I’m in some sort of limbo here but still I write and write, trying to insert my words between those rigid ribs of yours, filled up with prairie dirt instead of heart. I’m in some sort of limbo here but every time I see those goddamn mountains, something deep inside me sings.

© Lynnette D’anna 2019