a beautiful stretch of time


in the house above the garage, tucked far in from the street,

there was a small space full of fortunes to be found

behind the one door in the house I, could lock

a place to spew out sobs that had to be held in my chest all day

and one from which to gulp great breaths of the clear and quiet night air

a place to sit, or stand or lie down, jump up or down

and company, and space and light

what tickled me most was the simultaneity of (a)symmetry

in the jagged, overlapping teeth that leaned against each other like stalks of some green in a field

the once tiny triangular hole, in the middle of my two front teeth

that quietly widened each passing year

the eyes evenly spaced and so evidently one smaller than the other

the ‘very present nose’, that had me searching the library for photos of Indira Gandhi,

to see what similarity someone saw.

at that time, it was a fun habit to never wipe tears

finally, when I had the chance, I’d run in, lock the door, and stand in front of the mirror

and just allow them

the time they needed to find their way across my face,

new crooked paths paved each time, some merging with others,

some making it all the way to my chin

slowing then, pausing, collecting, shining

in the protracted light that reflected from the bulb to my eyes to the mirror,

translucent little sacs lingering, until I always and just in time

rescued, from the preying pulls of gravity

on some nights a book, a snuck sheet, some charcoal and paper,

to settle comfortably in the beautiful stretch of time a night can be.