here’s some reality

what nobody knew
except the one who knew her best
was the reel she played in her head
anytime
every time
her intuition cried out
black and white, 8 mm
out of the tin canister
and strung on a reel to reel
the wheels turn…

and there she was
first footsteps in the dirt
looking out over her brother’s grave
and seeing the guitar pick
for the first time
laid on the stone
she had never seen his body
nor had anyone she knew
ashes arrived in the mail
with personal belongings
not long after
and it couldn’t be real
it couldn’t be
she felt him still here
and the guitar pick to prove it

she had never understood funerals
staring at dead people
empty shells filled with embalming fluid
weirdly made to look alive
they creeped her out
until then
looking down at that guitar pick
she was not closed on the matter
and funerals gave closure
no second guessing when
a dead body is right next to you
the problem with no closure
is everything it still open
to interpretation
including guitar picks

when they began appearing out of nowhere
she began to wonder
could there have been a mix up
some plot from a script
here in her real life
but she knew
life
is not a LifeTime movie
as much as hers often
resembled one
dead people do not rise from ashes
or knock on your door after decades
or leave rambling comments on your blog about your dead brother
29 times
hoping you’ll approve their comments

no

dead people stay dead
and she would have to remind herself
over and over again
guitar pick after guitar pick
found in odd places
she had perfected getting back to her real
new things came
new situations
thoughts of recognition
thoughts of intuition

now when she began building chain links
she analyzed it
rolled it over her tongue
tasting its realness
licking the marrow of it
if the meatiness passed
her taste test
she moved it down the conveyor belt
straight into the firing line of her brain
all rifles pointed
each marching in place to find the truth
call and response
sung for cadence

listen now what you’ve been told
your mind plays tricks as you get old
sound off
1, 2
sound off
3, 4

she knew
wants and wishes can be so strong
she could gather proof
of their actual existence
looking for that shred of hope
in every paragraph
on every sidewalk
with every guitar pick
she knew she could end up
John Nash
pinning headlines to cork boards
connecting words and conspiracies
if she didn’t stop herself
she would be that beautiful mind
and we all know how that ended

over time she learned
if she began to go
down that rabbit hole
she pulled out her 8 mm film
turned the lights off
and watched
reliving that pain
but reminding herself

it can’t be real
it can’t be
wishes don’t come true

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