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Cristin H May 2015
You died on a Monday.

Nobody likes Mondays.
But this day was the first of the longest week there has ever been
or will ever be.
Days dragging their feet like my heart across the pavement.
Please save your questions, comments, and complaints,
I'm trying to wrap my head around dead dreams and saints
how the faint cries echoing through my insides
to strangers
and soulmates.

You died on a Tuesday.

Such an unassuming day for departing
Nothing happens on a Tuesday.
Until her phone rang,
We were parked outside of our favorite restaurant
I heard the world flatline to the sound of traffic
We stayed in the car.
Now parked on the roof of patient parking,
Though I had never felt less patient  
How the ******* sun can shine when you can't even breathe.
I watched my mother cry until she wouldn't in front of you.
we COULDN'T in front of you.
I promised.
But we did.

You died on a Wednesday.

A day like a life, only halfway through and it's forgotten itself.  
Like I had forgotten the heaviest my heart has ever felt
was the night I looked into my sisters eyes
and spoke like doctors,
Wore the words "there's nothing left to do" like they had ever even come close to answering the question
Which was the only one she could get out
They said he could have up to a year
Or as little as a week.

You died on a Thursday.

The day so wrapped up in the promise of tomorrow,
we can only ever think about yesterday.
Throwback to any single moment before this day.
Throwback to 5 days before
watching the irony of a birthday cake in hospice
While I wondered
how many wishes it would take to keep you.
Throwback to the moment that we were alone
when you grabbed me by the collar,
So tight and so close
I could smell heaven on your breath,
As you squeezed a plea into a whisper
Of Here.
I was silent.
But I swear to god I was screaming at the top of my heart.
And I am sorry every single day
that I had no way
to wheel, walk, or wish you out.

You died on a Friday.

I had never been further from TGIF-ing
I was busy wondering why
and begging for your breath back.
You hadn't said a word in days,
your eyelids hung heavy like sheets off an empty bed,
but when mom would whisper our names into your ear
I watched every ounce of strength you had
stand shoulder to shoulder
forcing your eyes open in bursts
like the fourth of july finale
we could hear from your bedroom.
You were a god in each goodbye,
While the blue drained from each your eyes
for us to paint our days with.

You died on a Saturday.

I thought the weekend had a deathwish
showing up like it belonged in our bereavement,
like this week would ever end,
like it hadn't heard the news.
Every night was a silent struggle
we couldn't stay,
but wouldn't go.
The night before we had collapsed into a pile on hard-backed chairs
At the mercy of the nurses who didn't have the heart to make us go,
or just enough
to let us stay.
I didn't sleep a wink that night,
I was busy listening to the human hum of our family set to the slowing beep of your vitals
and wondering,
if the grass you'll lie under will know where it came from.
But this night,
this night there was a quiet compliance
an air of understanding in our war-torn bodies

nothing happens after midnight.
Until my phone rang.

You died on a Sunday.

You were holier than any day of the year.
I don't know if you let go
or if dying always feels like drowning.
Like I was in every drop of water your skin couldn't hold in anymore.
Like my mother was in disbelief.
Like my grandmother was in desperation.
Like my sister was in sadness.
Our family
And not one of us moving.

You died every day that week,
and you've died every day since.
You died on her wedding day
and at my graduation
You die on your birthday
and on every anniversary
and every single day that we have to deal
with an absence so great that it deafens.
And all I can do is wonder,
what the time difference is in heaven,
and how many sleeps it will be before I see you again.
I wonder if the angels recognized you.
And how you hid your wings
so well
for so long.

But mostly I wonder,
if you wonder too.
Cristin H Apr 2015
I didn't get to say goodbye.

Not in the way I wanted to.

Not in the way that made clear as the glass
you shattered,
that this
was temporary.

Not in the way that I could promise you that every firing neuron in that beautiful brain
lights up your eyes
like shooting stars.
You think like the sky.

Not in the way that came anywhere near answering WHY?

Not in the way that stitched every I love you on the tip of my tongue together
into so big a blanket
I could swear,
you would never feel cold.

Not in the way that apologizes for maps making miles into inches
that should only equal minutes
But you realize once you're in it,
wading through the hearts that could never find their way,
objects on maps are further than they appear.
Much like the face that i see in the mirror.

I wish I was there.
I wish you were here.

I hope you don't hate me

But I'm grateful to the sea.

For catching you gently
before rocking you to sleep
in the arms of a stranger
who in saving you,
saved me.

Like I am grateful to light
and time
and airbags
and the dark side of miracles.  

I am not a religious person.

But if you dont believe in guardian angels,
then I have to believe in mine.

Because I,
cannot lose you

My heart knows my throat like the inside of it's cage
because that is where it found you,
where I find it when I sit
and I miss you,
warming the words I always said I'd say.

So until I do,


If it makes the space seem smaller,
I have written you so many unsent letters
that if I lay every word down end to end
I could build you a bridge
that wrapped three times around the moon
So we could at least pretend,
I'd see you soon.

A bridge,
strong enough to hold you
and the fifty tons of memories
that ware you like waves,
Crashing against your ribs
in a storm
Where no heart is safe.

I'm sorry you wake in sandy sheets
That no matter how high you climb
there's a beach at your feet.

But not a single broken piece of you
will ever be sand
no part of your spirit
was made from this land.

You are one hundred percent sky
spread between two precious hands

And I'm just a star,
who followed a bridge to the moon.
I'll see you soon.
I'll see you soon.
Cristin H Jan 2015
You've destroyed me too many times
For me to allow you to poke through the rubble

Cristin H Dec 2014
Her first words were poetry,
Painting passion into people
like every soul was a self-portrait titled

As a child she gave each color words that they
could only ever scream,
She gave a voice that flowed like water,
A symphony of dreams.

She grew like fondness,
Towering above us at five foot everything
but forever looking up
like we were the night sky holding starlight in our eyelids
like secrets.

She waits.
Soaking in silence, still
Like the world is whispering
and she's trying to hear it.

Her own whisper floats like falling snow
that melts on your eyelashes
so that it might retrace the steps
of the last tear you cried
just in case,
It's not too late to catch it.

She is a million moments of lightness,
A thousand "I'm sorry's" for the wrongdoings of others.
She is one hundred sleepless nights
of someone else's nightmares,
Kept up with gallons of fresh-ground giving
wanting nothing in return but to know
She means it.

She's got big in her fingertips
like the sun setting and rising into itself,
Until it burns the whole sky down.

She is a quiet presence with an absence
that deafens.
Planting patience into moments
like flowers.
So that you can watch them grow
into a billion brilliant bulbs
of every miss you've ever made,
But were too scared to hope for.

She paints life onto the ordinary
until it knows that it was never anything
but beautiful.

Forever expanding the vocabulary
of the colors she breathed words into
in a children's coloring book
whose lines could Never keep her in.

While the whole world waits,
Just hoping to hear them.
To my friend, whom I love.
Cristin H Dec 2014
I used to be your morning.

Back stretched,
arms reaching,
asking the day its first question.

You always slept on the left side of the bed.
Our left.
My right, now.
But then.
And now,
My right has never felt more wrong.

Your eyes were always soft at sunrise.
Lids lifting like lungs and falling
like feathers.

You loved the smell of coffee
and the taste of special k.
Though I never understood why.

You never watched the news
because it was always
heart breaking
breaking news
news worthy
never worthy of your worry
so early in the morning.

I used to be your afternoons.

Your smile always felt like the summer,
when I met you.

You wore a white dress
and a warning label.
I wore heart stained sleeves
and a nervous smile.

I'm glad I didn't listen.
Most of the time.
You lived like flowers.

Toes planted in the grass,
always greener.

catching rain like a break,
light like your breath.
Impossible to keep
but never the less,
you were beautiful.  

Beautiful in the way you took naps,
in the way you brushed your hair
while complaining it was too straight.
Beautiful in the way you would sway
To any music that I'd play,
I couldn't say it then but it's too late now

And in the way you'd get excited
when I would pick you up
but somehow, I let you down.
And I'm sorry.

Your eyes rivaled every sunset,
But the light always leaves with a promise,
you left with a suitcase.  

I used to be your nighttime.

I sleep in the same spot that you left me in.
But wake up in the middle.
one arm outstretched,
hand hiding beneath your pillow.
My. pillow.

My fingers are foolish,
still thinking they'll find you.

Like myself when in sleep.

How do you tell your memories to close their eyes
when you dream?
when the only world I am aware of
is the one that I've been keeping,
saving, holding, tending to
my mind is a garden,
growing dreams, still, for you.

I suppose one day,
I'll run out of seeds.
The soil will spoil,
I'll be knee deep in weeds.

But until then
every bud in my brain blooms in bed,
vines and fields of flowers
fill every inch of my head.
So long as I keep my eyes closed,
shades drawn,
room too dark to invite the dawn
that hits the fields like winter.

I used to be yours.

I don't know what you dream of now,
who slows you down when the world spins
faster than your stillness can stand,
how many times a day you find your hand
wandering to where I've been.

Though I tried hard not to say it,
I know that you knew.
I didn't mind how you felt,
but I always

All I have now are used to be's
to keep these,
my own hands,
That happiness finds you happy
and freedom finds me free.

But until they arrive
Every morning,
and night
I'll know nothing of you
And one thing of me,
we used to be,
I used to be.
Cristin H Sep 2014
And in that moment
The world was wrapped around my heart
like a hug
Until the beat
became a hum

That sounded just like our song.

My fingers felt like feathers
at the end of a five foot wing span
that suddenly seemed boundless

as I reached towards forever
and you.

I bent my legs like the rules
to lean into the memories of you
I had promised not to keep.

I only ever wade in them,
It's not safe to go too deep.

My feet hung like dream catchers
Heavy with hope
that they might catch you

wandering the space between my eyelids
and the night sky.

My hands were nomads
tracing the maps on each your palms
trying to remember their way home.

You held worlds like water
and me.

Only ever taking sips
so your thirst stays hungry
while it drips

between fingers spread too wide
from wear.

I found god between your ankles
Shaking like shackles
as I kneeled.

We only spoke in whispers
every broken word was healed.

The world rocked
when you walked away
My arms spread wide
Like a plea to stay.

But your wrists were teathered
to a feathered dream
That wouldn't come true

Unless you left me,
unless I let you.

My eyes were crystal *****
watching you go
in the only way you knew how

over and over

And in that moment,
I was a hurricane in your hands,
I was the ocean at your feet.
But you could only ever wade in me,

It wasn't safe to go to deep.
Cristin H Sep 2014
All I could do
was all I had done.

I followed you

like the night,
chases after the sun.

I chased you

like a wave,
reaches out to the shore.

I reached you

like the end,
and can now do no more.
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