Why do you like me, Jon?
“You’re a smart-ass.”
His likes are the only way I can tell
He’s still around. Thank god,
He’s still here. Grounding me,
when all I want to do,
is fly away, rejoin the troops,
see the church on the hill
with my people running down
to greet me by my real name,
my real name is the melody
you play on the piano,
bass and sax sidebar,
the solo before the parade,
the afterglow of a full set,
full pay, the payoff
of all those fruitless searches,
a bell in the center of town,
the crystal mountain majesty
as brown trees shake off
brown tree dead weight.
He is a constant reminder
of the one who got away,
my last chance to get it right this time.
Something in his eyes,
the way the wind ruffles his thick, curly hair,
greying around the edges,
my sunset in July.
He is nothing like Mark.
Straight, unsentimental, clinical, and full of self,
full of remarkable grit,
grifting charm and brilliance into my life,
in this reluctant, almost half-assed caring,
I’ve grown accustomed to craving,
like scotch in the middle of this heated atmosphere,
when everyone mindful has lost their minds, yeah,
scotch sitting bare feet playing Coltrane by memory,
fluffy stray cats batting strings.
And yet, he is what Mark might’ve become
had he been someone else,
someone closer to me.
The time for me to wish I could be
what he wanted,
Originally published at https://carolbankswebercoggie.wordpress.com on January 26, 2021.