This song has nothing to do with my middle daughter;
Nor with this brief swatch of words,
Or why I’m wiping the water from my mind’s eye
With these frameless thoughts.
All of it has everything to do with her, us,
The trust in time we’ve sparest-rain-grown,
Moments we’ve almost casted-leg-tripped-upon together,
Our jugulars gravitationally drawn to within half-an-inch
Of some random shard of forgotten, redemptive glass.
We might’ve stumbled into love
(As parents’ve never understood they’ve slipped the cliff
Until that vast, airless,
Gaping chasm of chillingly invigorating responsibility
Envelops their soul in the very rarest of choices);
But we, she and I, on-our-fairest-chances,
Have leaned into, forearm-caught,
Right before the rattling shadows of this often-horrifying world—
Saved one another from our being too-regularly and near-buried
Beneath the dirt of mere, oddly sufficient,
This song migrated from her playlist to mine,
Like a wish-feathered feeling she owns for reasons, to me,
Remain ethereal, secret-eclipsed, and okay-unknown.
It’s enough that it rain-catches meaning for her,
That she holds it close for purely knowing it in-her-own-unsearchable,
It’s because she’s somehow taken possession of it,
I crawl wildly through thistle to save it, cup it,
Clinch it into my caved-in chest with all my greying strength—
Willfully, though almost peripherally—
As if it were the sharpest, most-treacherous,
Knife-edged flame hammered out for but one purpose:
To warm again my black-and-blue father’s heart by running it through.
Just another song;
Yet it swoons to become my anthem and flag,
Afire and fierce and only-she-knows-how-silhouette-vanquishing.
I swing it wide on my bloodied soul’s sword;
I madman-stab it into the bleakest night;
I slide it like a focused beam of brightest, inextinguishable light
Into the throat of whatever cut-loose
‘Mare has dared to hurt her…
Today, her song has again become mine.
We’ll sit silent, listen and—
In this unsettlingly still, fastly vanishing moment—
Hum it together.