Monday, February 2, 2015

2 Feb/Returning to Korea

I hate that you’re dead.

I hate it most here
in Korea where men
who are not you
sometimes wear your
trademark flat cap.

I hate that you’re dead.
I’d hate it anywhere. I
hated it in New Zealand
sitting between your
parents at the dinner table,
having just said grace.

I hate that you weren’t
there. But more than that,
I hate that you’re not here
in Korea upon my return. 

The brown grasses and
muted grey skies of
winters past didn’t used to
seem so bleak. I hate that
you’re not here.

There is a photograph of
you and I gently kissing.
Our arms are touching as
though we’d carefully
considered their placement.

Our lips had found each other
just before the camera winked.

The canvas behind us had
been stripped bare for winter;
green hills now the color of wheat,
tiny trees like upturned claws,
and all I remember is your arm
on my arm. The warmth of your
lips. The grey leather Converse
high-top shoes on your feet.

And the fact that just before
you kissed me, I had told you
that you smelled like Christmas.

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