I Keep Finding New Ways to Fall
To hurt yourself in a dream
and wake up with a bruise
is what writing is like. Also grief.
On the yoga mat I cry because
we are all dying alone despite the good china,
the stemmed shot glasses in silver nests
that came unglued in the sink.
Don’t you hate how photographs
laugh at you for being a fool, for trusting time
to heal what is unhealable. Here, look at yourself
two, five, eight years ago, so damn hopeful.
My therapist asks what I mean by progress.
I mean sage towels, my aunt’s dementia, taxes.
I mean not having a panic attack
in the spice aisle at Waitrose.
Someone keeps moving the bookmark
back in my life and here I am again, still,
I was already still here again yesterday,
last year, already mourned
processed forgave remourned
all of this. What I mean by progress
is not fewer bruises
but knowing what line comes next in the song
or even just, am I meant to sing or to listen.
The last time I went back home
my father and I drove by a sunflower field
but it was too early, too cold, they were
nothing but little green fists that didn’t know
how to burn yet, how to tell east from west.
I too am continuing to arrive.
Adriana Cloud's work has appeared in The Rumpus, McSweeney's, and others. Her chapbook Instructions for Building a Wind Chime is available from the Poetry Society of America. Find her on Twitter at @adicloud.