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"In My Life" yes she well remembers
you in the Summer of her 28th
year.  She has never seen the likes
of her since then.

She scans the air for red sunsets, for sandy beaches, for tears in the
fabric of time itself.  

You go now.  Her reverie is hers alone.  She shares herself with
no one.  At last she remembers
"In My Life" . The song repeats
and she dances around with you
in the dust of her old age.

You are gone a long time.
The only thing is,  
the music
remained.

Caroline Shank
I have known you already, known
your voice in the songs of other
men.  Our history is in
ancient dreams.
We danced during
the nights of music.

I have seen you across
lamplit streets, haloed by fog.  We meet at the annointed
moment when dreams divest themselves
of surer things. Chase through
time memories in a golden cup.

I have tasted you already, the salt
skin sweat under my lips.  Kisses
during a drumbeat.  Sounds
unceasing.  

A toast
whispers to the real world.


Caroline Shank
Why should I stay?  I can
find no existential reason
to do so.

Family?  That is emotional
blackmail.  I cannot defy
their reason, but I can't
make sense of it.

I see worms in my soup,
snakes in my dresser
drawers.  Everywhere I
look there is putrefaction.

I am to be cremated.  My
Urn waits with it's label
already in place.

But! Hear the reasons
why I stay.  My God,
my soul's supporter is
not ready for me.  This
I believe.  That when it
is time for me to leave
the violence of this place
I will be shown the way.

This I believe.  That my
family is succour to my
pain and I am grateful
for them.  My children
are made of the same
stuff that gods are made
of. My grandchildren bloom
with my vision of purity.

The worms will not have
me as long as I have You
to listen.  You who are my
soul's radio.  I turn the
hymn of Your life on

and wait.

Caroline Shank
You’ve spilled like sun on my
shoulders, like light through
a glass. Your face is in front
of me as I write.

I break through.
You are the weather
in which I have grown
so green.

The poems are fertile
vines growing out
through open windows.

You know me better
than I know
how to be.

Caroline Shank
Thought is always with you like a child
growing in your deepest spaces.  To think
is what you were born for.  You are alive
with questions that brood in your mind
unlimited possibilities.  What do you
read, you who are books?  You
press yourself.

Thought pounds within you.  Each beat
is a hundred years of knowledge.  You
were imprinted on intelligence.  Your
selective Mother.

Thought is always with you.  Lines of
poetry choose to be born through your
fingers like red drips on the page.  You
are in labor, the constant ache of
creation.

You were born in the dark, celestial,
implosion.  You enter through a door;
access to the deepest recess of
experience.

Caroline Shank
We walked together not saying
a word.  It was Summer, the
lake was blue and we held hands.  
Not so unusual you might say.

The city was behind us then.
Tall buildings of wind washed
brown and gray lined the
streets.  You looked
at me gently folding.

I asked for one more day.  
We spent the last of
time quietly.  Tomorrow would
not be there for us.  We return
to the hologram of ourselves.
Long goodbyes, unheard chimes
of weddings that were not ours.

I mean, so much of the lives of
others are meant for each of us.
I bend my head against the wind
and whisper these words,

I live
always,
you.


Caroline Shank
I used my heart to get close
to you.  I pounded the inside
of my world.  It was magic.
My heart beat a tattoo that
you could feel a thousand
miles away.  

You knew me from the
inside.  You never turned
away.  I held you in the
palms of my hands.  Your
fragile skin translucent.

I was born to be yours.  You
marked me with your
substantial smile.  It was
never too late.  You were
a breath away from dying.
I was in the air.  

I heard the cry, I was on
the verge of living without
the blue of your eyes.  You
turned  me to breathing.
You wheeled away unknowing
that under the blanket  I
placed a breathless wish
for your heart to beat
to mine.  

Child of mud and seawater
you came at last to the
shore of my time.  

I believe in you.

Caroline Shank
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