Ugly-Crying in the Safeway Parking Lot


For years I didn’t know how to live

without someone watching.

I didn’t trust myself to buy eggs.

I fed myself to the twin lions of sleep

and work, and daily I emerged with hands

useless and spent as wet matches.

Before I knew that to heal

is, at times, to leave the wound

uncovered, ugly-crying

in the Safeway parking lot,

I thought mine was the only boat

listing sideways in the harbor

between health and the great cold sea.

Despair can be foolish if you give it

enough room, the way a campfire grows

when you take the bigger logs away.

Still, they exist: starfish, moonflowers,

airplanes, hot coffee, olive oil and garlic

slick in the pan. There’s always a perfect time

to wait and wait for.

Always a new anxiety spreading its wings

in the canyon of your chest.

I will wrap my shoes in plastic

and row far from shore.

There is not enough time in the day

to love everything.