Day 511, November 18, 2021
The ability to continue,
the inability to continue.
A quiet house
where even the dog
stays curled into a cashew on the couch.
It is unseasonably warm,
which will make each subsequent day
all the more painful,
so easy is it to forget suffering
and cold thighs.
The geese are raucous.
I imagine the apologies I will make
for not being present,
for still catching up,
for not catching up.
A day like today people are reborn
or at least eat lunch outside
and think about the long legs of summer.
A day like today makes one close one’s eyes while walking
and pretend paths are revealed with each step.
And still there are the pangs,
the labored breathing of the pandemic,
the effort of tying to emote enthusiasm or care through a face mask.
If I carried beads, I would run them through my fingers.
If I listened to Mozart I might listen to Piano Concerto No. 21.
If I recited poetry from memory I might recite Neruda’s “Keeping Still.”
If I wore crop top shirts, I might wear a crop top shirt.
A day like today,
I still don my knit cap and gloves
and zip up my hood before stepping outside,
because it is easy to forget what it feels like
to be warm and loved.
Prayers of Protection