Reflections, battles and bears

The weather here is fickle
almost capricious
like a bipolar bear
running roughshod through
the hallways and stairwells
of my house
caged
Oh wait.
That was me.
The manifold ways that
winter affects me
ought to be inscribed on
a plaque and hung from
my neck like a disclaimer:
“Warning: Do not feed,
do not poke with care,
do not thought provoke.
This animal’s mood is inevitably
in transit
in spans of seconds
sending spiraling down into
an immobile brand of misery
that should only be marketed
to boys who look like
girls and wear pants so
tight as to cut the circulation off
to their surely minuscule genitalia.”

Yeah, sometimes my disclaimers
they get rough with ya but
the truth…
the truth is my face
in a mirror
Where you can see the lines in my eyes
stretch for miles with the luggage
under my eyes.
And that luggage has travelled.
It seems like it stacks up
like rings on a tree,
you can almost see the age.

From the beginning ’til now
it’s been accumulating
but I won’t bore ya with the details
I’ll just give ya the
highlights.

4 years ago – Panic attacks
that left me numb to the
touch and over-oxygenating
breathless, deflated.

3 years ago – A relationship that
was supposed to reach into forever
lasted a grand total of 8 months
and fell flat and died on the spot
in my car a week before Christmas

A year go. Oh, a year ago.
Catch this:
I got entangled in the grips
of a red-haired dream brought
to life, breathed into and
tied across my back with
the strings of my heart,
her hands gripped in my hair,
and 4 vicious stabs
into the deepest part of
my guts.
(The stench was awful)
But that same knife,
she used to cut herself
free and run away with
apologies, tears and a vow of silence
that is still quiet today.
But she did not leave without
a parting shot, planting that knife
square between my shoulders.
I’ve since forgiven
but, trust, I haven’t forgotten.

Now, listen, this isn’t written
to elicit some pedantic, pathetic pity party
from ya because
I may not know you,
but I do know what I don’t need.
And that is exactly, perfectly
the complete definition of it.

It’s just that, to everything
there is a season (turnturnturn)
and this one has the same amount
of happiness of a bunch of kids
who discovered there’s no Santa
but before they were assured
they’d still get their presents.

Can you feel it?
Did you know your face has a memory?
That if you configure your features
into a visage of perfect sadness
your memory will evoke the appropriate emotion
that’s attached to it? To your face?
Memory is that detail-oriented,
that it remembers how you look when you feel.

And when winter comes to me,
face to face,
I mimic its expression and
I spiral down.
It remembers my sadness,
like the kind I feel when
I think of my grandpa
dying in a sun room
to a noonday nocturne
withering away like a flower hung
upside down for an extended period of time.
I’m just waiting for him to dry… die.

So, this bear lumbers through the
cold wind and the snow just to
tell you that
maybe I’m on a journey
where my memory is learning new faces
where the graves finally give up the ghosts
and maybe, just maybe I’ll learn to rest.
This is a test of my endurance.
In hoping for hope,
let me battle hard to find joy.

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