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Long Beach, CA

Before I Go, to All the Books I've Read

I believe on the day I die all the books I’ve read will rise 
To thank me, and I them
We’ll shake hands in a long line, and spend a quiet time wide-eyed, with lips pursed to hold down all that is inside us
And before some of them I’ll pause, a sad and knowing smile on my face, and I’ll touch their spine, 
For some, that will be enough, but to others I’ll whisper something just loud enough for them alone to hear
They’ll laugh and cry in that sacred mix of powerlessness and love and letting go
And each will hand to me a stem of fruit in different shapes
Pears and apples, oranges and grapes
Before I come down to the ocean water and the waves which will take me home

I will try to screw my tears down then, but if they come, so be it
Then I’ll nod my head and look up the beach
And perhaps, a unicorn or stag will appear, breaking up the sand as it runs towards it freedom—and it may all be real, for by then I’ll be seeing clear through to the other side

But before I go, of course, I’ll walk the fruit back to that fabled tree and place it on the branches
The tree will receive it, suckling it back onto its breast to hang there 
Until someone soon after me plucks it and drink its juice down to their young roots

Then, I’ll swim into those clear cold waters, my breath leaving me, and all the words and worlds will fade behind, as I come to the place beyond them, 
Where there is only sight and sound and once again, like a babe new born in the bright blue world, all is light 
To this place where all the books—when they stumbled into truth—were pointing us:
This place so full of You 
With ears now opened and the song of my eyes quiet, filled and full,
With all I never knew


For more poetry, click here.