The Shakedown

In my dreams, everything falls down around me.
I try to hold it all together, but I can’t, I can’t.
I pick these things back up, but only get props for taking the blame,
for knocking over something clean when it was meant to fall.
I am merely decent at controlling the mistakes I’ve made.

Entropy acts on all levels of the universe,
and this is the reason why I want a clean house,
a blank page, neat handwriting,
folded clothes, a grid with entries neatly penciled in.

God grabs the world like a gigantic sauté pan and shakes.

Soon everything will tumble off the shelves, and
all the food will touch the ground and be inedible, and
all the books will get crinkles in their pages when they land face down, and
the sheets will come off the bed and end up on the floor.
And I’ll wind up there too, spine twisted and broken and limbs splayed all around,
and I will sulk and cry, just another part of the mess.

The tumbling, the disorganization, seems at times the only extant law,
and yet we work and toil,  and rush to pick things up
when it is evident they’ll only fall again.

But this is not life! to end up part of someone else’s messy room.
We stick together like muscle fibers, tendons latching on and building, building.
We strive and fight and hurt, and blithely stand against the blowing wind.
We strive for clarity and permanence, the things which make us feel as if we’ve left a mark;
the things that make us feel beautiful and loved.

We crave a kinder word, a softer cheek,
the pleasure of another’s touch,
where in one second we stand alone united, upright, eternal,

against

the

shakedown.

To look at you, and know that this is something real,
when you look back, and then you slowly smile—
when life for me is but a house of falling cards,
a sandcastle with us inside,
where sandy rivers start to trickle from the ceiling,
and outside, all is earthquakes—
This is to know that there are things which last, and rise above the disarray;
these memories that sublimate to heaven
are things that you and I will never lose.

When nothing feels solid, and I don’t know what to do,
I can regain myself and focus,
for I have found a home in you.

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