i’ve spent so many decembers not making resolutions. when it was just me it was so easy to not think of the future, or to just think of my own, and to know i didn’t need anything more than i had. even now, two years later, it’s still strange to think i might have something to work towards, plan.
there are the basics: stop smoking, cook healthier meals, get better at baking, read more books, write more often, go for walks along the canal even when it’s cold or out of the way. then there are loftier, more abstract goals that don’t feel attainable: don’t go crazy planning a wedding, keep up with correspondence, actively maintain relationships with my friends, take on more craft projects for the blog, improve my wardrobe, buy a house with a yard and sloped roof and a porch.
then there are wedding day & marriage goals: be a good wife? not fuck up my vows. not trip on my dress. be less sarcastic and more gracious. try not to offend anyone. don’t buy shoes that will hurt my feet even if they’re pretty. save my money. try not to look awkward when opening gifts. mind my manners. don’t yell at anyone. try not to get offended too easily. remember to thank everyone when making a speech.
don’t think about any of this too much. remember to thank my friends for not forgetting to be my friends.
i went somewhere important tonight
because it’s august
& it was the right place to be.
walked the rideau river in the dark, swing sets off rideau river road, sunnyside to echo, the long way through the side streets, east side of the canal, bay windows & balconies, no exit signs, main street, pretoria bridge and the canal back to home, fifth avenue.
from their beds,
oil from pores, and
everything else. pillows
encased in this week’s dirt,
towels absorbing the water we
spilled on the floor.
be more eccentric than
in the centre. there is
here too: no opposition
i would rather have.
that i might have lingered, if not
at your feet then in memory,
if not on the skin of your lips then
in history, but seldom your shell
was where i understood
you. you saw me
the saddest i
now i think “this is stupid”, and stop writing, and go camping, again and again it’s the same.
as grateful as i am that i have not
received a paper cut in these two
cautionary slice, i am that hockey
season’s over, and with it
that pale memory of yellow living
rooms, the walls the shade of
bags in hospitals, of trails left
by dying snails
and grey shadows of the sounds
of one last game on the TV cast into your eyes,
your eyes i couldn’t see through my
closed eyelids, your eyes i felt
once in a while, while we hid
that we were
holding hands beneath my sweater.
you trailed me home and kissed my
the part of me already dead.
my best childhood friend died on christmas day. he was a boy, but he was my best friend. my family went to the visitation back home, but i couldn’t be there. i loved him deeply, very strangely, and first. sometimes i even thought that when we grew up, when we were older, in high school maybe, we’d date. i remember a time when he was the most important person in my world. by high school we’d drifted apart of course, and barely spoke.
still. his death has broken me in a way i can’t describe to my family, or friends, or boyfriend, or anyone. only he would know the things we shared as kids that we promised would stay important forever. the things that didn’t.
i miss his existence.
that’s really the most i can say.