red tin mug

red tin mug

I.

sometimes words look like gestures, and gestures are violent words, so it takes an eye to see backwards, vertically, and forwards again to tumble over just the right light,

if light were meaning, that is. Light is a wave of color, but colors are wavelengths themselves, so one ocean of tumbling wavelengths equals one gesture, because waving is a sign of hello.

on the broad stripe of a light tower, the city beckons hello. If I were an ocean I’d go underground to wherever the dirt blankets you, because water diffuses towards fewer colors. That’s a reason to stay together, because our colors equal light.

II.

if you do not stay with me I hope you find the right bus home. I hope the bus will take you to an ocean so you can greet the light. You can wave or say hello. I trust

the colors of your gesture will travel the lands back to my lap. If you were a watercolor I’d dip you in cold tea and hang you on my wall. I’d bring you dry leaves and dip you

in salutes and bows and consoling back slaps until you were full of meaning and dripping with ocean.

III.

i don’t have the heart to tell you that I’ll some day get on the wrong bus. I’ll drop all of my bags of oranges and lychee and leave them in an opal puddle.

i don’t want to tell you that I burned secrets in your favorite mug and stashed the ashes in one of your photo albums. It doesn’t feel like my secret to tell,

because half the country believes in ghosts, so I think I passed on all my secrets to those witnesses unseen,

if secrets were still words and those swept burning in your red tin mug were my gestures.

III.

i won’t wave goodbye. I don’t know how to.

if I try, all my farewells look like hellos, and when I go to greet I end up miles away looking out the back windows

of buses and air balloons and sailing waves of almost whole moments that nearly look like full movements of a hand sailing from side to side.

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