Because it’s Sunday
And Sunday is idle. And when I’m inactive, I think. And sometimes when I think I decide to try and wax poetic.
Under the waterfall, where two
Rivers combine, their waters green and brown,
You went further up the rocks (don’t know why)
And slipped, cut your hand, wet your shoe
Then you walked the bridge, where a girl
Bounced, reckless, and you were afraid, angry.
I took your picture–you smiled, uneasy–
It was underexposed, blurry.
I bought you a Coke; you didn’t
Tell me, but I knew you had no money.
You wiped blood on your shirt and asked me to
Go with you down to the river
We saw a monkey and butterflies,
And you showed me rocks that you had penciled.
You put one rock on top of another.
This is art, you said. I nodded.
You dipped your toes in the river
And then wet your hair. Perhaps, I thought,
He is close to God. On the way back,
I waved to your friend, tending his
Garden–sweaty, happy, vital.
When we left, he planted, covered, and hoped.
You said that you weren’t ever going to leave,
That you would live here forever.
I thought of my home, Dinosaur Rocks,
Dad’s garden in summer, Joe Silvers’ pond,
My one year as a vegetarian,
Cash spent on iPods, jeans, Starbucks.
You said you don’t know how to use
Email and put my bike on the rear of
The combi. I waved good-bye, and I went
Back to town, back to my hostal.
In the morning, I took the bus
Out and sat next to a boy selling gum.
I wondered what you were doing, what made
You happy today. Have you stacked
Any rocks? Have you put your feet
In the river? Helped your friend till his land?
Climbed up to the top of the waterfall?
What did you drink to quench your thirst?
Months later, when I was rushing to get to work,
I cut my hand on the rusted bicycle wheel
In my garage, and I thought about you.
I wondered if you were resting on the footbridge–
right then–watching the children swim, deciding to
fish, and living a long and happy life.