I cannot meet you on this day, this one glorious day I’ve been granted to unfold as I please. This one day not stacked sun up to sun down with meetings and phone calls and more messages than one can possibly respond, unless they chose to submit human form more fully to technology.
Transform robot. Allow heart to leak from dress onto floor, in scheduled, appropriate sections of course, in-between the 10:30 and noon, the 2-4. Just yesterday I scheduled a phone call with a friend one week from Friday, the one available evening left in my week. I have only two openings left this fall.
One might think I’m running for an office of some sort, yet I’m merely running for the forest that softens my skin and fills my chest with its feathered air, returns me to the river from which I was born.
There, this time on the land does not exist. Messages are sent by signal fire, in flint and stone and the flickering of eyes and fins and feathered wings.
It is there my silken mermaid tail was formed hundreds of years earlier, long before this scheduling of time and screens and things.
But these are not appropriate stories for the land, where so many are waiting to feast and purchase and package it all up, which is why I must return to the water, to soften and sing her ancient healing song, slip toes into September’s luxurious scales, slink out into a space where this world meets the others and time stretches on infinite….
Where stories can be told for entire afternoons and songs sung while stringing baskets of kudzu vine, where driftwood stadiums allow the guests of time to gather together, bodies renewed in the return to time unscheduled.
*This poem is available in my book Soft With Me, printed and bound in Western North Carolina thanks to a grant from the N.C. Arts Council.