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Say every year is a step away
From who you once were
And is a step closer
To who you will be

Ten years is ten steps
Ten steps and ten lessons
Ten lessons that shape
Who you will become

In ten years you will be
Ten steps away from now
And ten steps
Closer to then

Say ten years ago you liked fiction
And now, ten years later,
You only read memoirs

Say ten years ago you were angry
An now, ten years later,
You can’t remember why

Say ten years ago your hair was brown
And now, ten years later
Your hair is blonde

Say ten years from now you live
In a big city with loud noises
But now, ten years before,
You live at home and are uncertain

Say ten years ago you
Would never do that
And now, ten years later,
It is all you ever do

Ten years full of growth
Ten years full of lessons
Ten years full of discovering
You and what makes you whole

Say ten years ago you felt alone
And now, ten years later,
You have comfort
In solitude
Inspired by “You Are Jeff” by Richard Siken
Wedged somewhere between the aughts
In the early morning hours
What is it you hear?
Scatting of a bird
Or the ticking of the clock
Down the hall

The sun filters in, golden
Through wooden slats
Bitter coffee waits to be made
Sweet with cream and
Drops of maple

Home is slow and silent now
In this residual world
Where you rise and work
Busy yourself with tasks
Waiting to pick up where
Life left off

Spring is still here,
Blooming and cool
Soothing to the nervous spirit
You can still step outdoors,
Breathe in jasmine and fresh air
Humming, meditating, on newness

For now you follow a different routine
Connect, find comfort in what is
Around with new appreciation
Embrace a slow morning
And an easy evening
Sunshine and small escapes
To our essential workers and healthcare heroes during this very strange time, I thank you.
maybe i should not
walk towards dark
memories

i should not sit
with a knotted
stomach, not tear
into old wounds
that scabbed over

i should face
forward, and march
on, not pick away
at a thing that
was one so harmful

i shall continue on
and yes, i may
cry, but i will
heal by walking
by learning
by smiling

with my shoulders
back, and my
chin held high
and though my cheeks
will be tear-stained
i shall heal
  Sep 2019 Ally Gottesman
imparo
You and I
have a story
behind closed doors,
sneaking at night,
stealing kisses,
secretly holding hands.

But you and I
both know
this story
shall never be told
not even to a single soul.
Ally Gottesman Mar 2019
I want
To be free
Of guilt
To extend
My arms
Scream,
And maybe
Lose my mind
In the best way
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