If I was a person


If I was a person with a pen and some paper

I would skate that pen over that paper like a black swan, a leafless ice skater

tracing infinity in the snow’s frozen face,

a note to tell you I love you.


If I was a farmer with earth carved in my palms

I would gouge that earth and wash it back over the seeds I’d planted there

letting the harvest moon bathe their sleeping eyelids in forgiveness

so you could see from the sky above

a field of sustenance sown in my sweat and blood

a field swathed in my love for you.


If I was a king in an Easter-shellacked vest

I would point my fingers and make waves of men

swell against the discolored tide of other waves of men,

falling like berries into the cupped hands of strange lands.

I would paint the world with war,

smiting birdsong and the whole stirring clock that is New York

and in the silence you would not be able to ignore

my thunderous shout: I love you!


Sure, there would be plenty of ways

If I was a painter, a football player, or an expert who dredges plastic dinosaurs from toilets

If I was a gap-toothed schoolgirl

or even her jumprope I would whip the words out of thin air

I love you chalked, danced, whispered a million and two ways.

But as you see, I’m just a flower,

rooted in place, no hands to plow nor heart to draw from for the ink of blood

I flitter in the wind, a flower, a nothing

so if I never get around to telling you,

just shrug:

I can’t be blamed.


Image credits in order of appearance:

By Frederick Carl Frieseke – 6AF2HIXMHTAB_Q at Google Cultural Institute, zoom level maximum, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=29800271

By Dominicus Johannes Bergsma – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=51224605


One thought on “If I was a person

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