Almost some­times, almost
I can feel you there beside me, as I walk
along the aisles in the store and select pro­duce,
fruits and veg­eta­bles crisp
vibrant and bright — and there
almost, in my vision, another vibrance

unan­swered by the full gaze but almost, almost there, and I won­der how I can miss some­one
I have yet to meet.

In the car, on the drive, my palm
rests open on the seat­edge beside me
where your knee might be as I think
of what we might say as the world rolls past beneath
flash­ing and flar­ing in wild desert tans and reds and
dusky greens, and

with the the­ater seat beside me as empty I won­der if the ice bears would scare you. Or if they have already,
for you are alive now, a name, a face, a breath, held with mine in unspo­ken hope.

And if, after a day weav­ing light and dark in the depths of this sam­saric exer­cise, you
would open your hands to direct the flow of cloud and rain­bow,
the spat of rain on glass tak­ing you back to the nar­ra­tive and your eyes, dark or light
as you say you want to learn music
just like August.

— the roll of time pass­ing parsed in the beat of one heart,
and yours, unknow­ably dis­tant, and the flashes past, beyond, out­side the chill glass.

Eyes closed to the twi­light empti­ness of your vacant room
made more so by the made bunk
unsul­lied, unused unwrin­kled and unex­plored,
I feel and know the mis­fire, the flashes fad­ing into dysthemia’s tarbaby pull,
the draw­ing off of day into a world of shade and autumn’s with­ered hope
— another sea­son to weather, the man­tle light but lifeless

the cease­less point­less futil­ity of wait­ing has had its effect, the course has shifted into
the chill cur­rents, and the mast has heeled over under the cold disc of the dis­tant dark.

This sea­son of such impor­tance to fam­ily, the drive that,
one year ago, brought me to this place of wait­ing
and which remains, still,
Another time best shared is pass­ing, the shape of you in my life
still almost

but not yet


I am in the midst of ter­mi­nat­ing my rela­tion­ship with Arizona’s Children, the agency that seemed to offer me the plau­si­bil­ity of fost-​​adoption last year.

Reasons why are not very impor­tant now. It is a part­ing, but the adjec­tive ami­ca­ble might be out of place.

No one in charge at AzChi seems to know why I have never, in my his­tory with them, received on piece of mail in my box; and I think it’s odd that, in the last two months of silence I’ve had, imposed by my con­tact with them, I’ve been read as “aggres­sive” and “uncommunicative”.

Busy I under­stand. But a long his­tory of not return­ing calls, and of break­ing cru­cial appoint­ments, and of fail­ure to con­tact state agen­cies to fol­low up on home inspec­tions I read as passive-​​aggressive rejection.

It is not fair to refuse to return calls, then insist that a cor­re­spon­dent has been out of touch.

As for me, my annu­lar mush­fest is clos­ing in. Last week­end I went to Laughlin to see August Rush and Golden Compass. The for­mer was one hun­dred per­cent pre­dictable from its open­ing cred­its, and it left me droop­ing in my seat, going, awwwwwwwww.* The lat­ter, a foray into the texts of Pullman, but not that sat­is­fy­ing — though Lyra was as pretty and strong as I thought she might be.

Yoshi is the boy I have yet to meet. But I will meet him. This will hap­pen. I will be his.


* Freddie Highmore, lately of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Arthur and the Invisibles and Finding Neverland, was the title char­ac­ter in August Rush. He did okay los­ing his Brit accent and, mirable dictu, upstaged Robin Williams. What I didn’t know was that he was also the voice of Lyra’s demon, Pantalaimon, in Golden Compass. Why this mat­ters is that Freddie Highmore has pretty much always played a bright, good sweet­heart in every movie I’ve seen him in, and I’d like a set of three of him, aged twelve, eight and four, FedExed to my home some­time late next week. (He’ll be six­teen on February 14, 2008. What a hell of an appro­pri­ate birth­day for him to have. And yes, I’ll take one of those too, please.)


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