​​Love Song from My Future Self


I have survived, astonished,
into the middle of a new century.

What could I have wrought
to warrant such fortune?

Minimal sin?
No such luck.

Joy? Angsty Jew.
Be serious. I have indulged

the abysses in every blessing.
Let the light fall prey

to so many who will readily
feed on our frailty,
use us to raise barricades
against their own dissolution.

I've tried to not give in
to a life of writing in anger —

of holding the glass
as the sun illumined all its flaws,

made them at once
captivating and inescapable.

But the earth said remember me.
I remember whales

drowning, tangled
in human livelihood —

seabirds, gullets
cracking with plastic —

the air's secret darkness
betraying our lungs. I remember

not knowing
how to leverage my voice.

What could I proffer
other than resignation's slow seeds

as my life devolved
into a gaunt bitterness  

which knew only
all I failed to salvage?

So now I fight to square
the debt that is my breath —

to not abide silence —
because if grief

is yearning with no one to answer it,
to write in anger

is the only way to write in love.