Once, I believed the Mayans. An adolescent
in his pajamas, dozing off to the Discovery
Channel, past bedtime. At the age, precisely,
when bedtimes were past their own bedtimes,
and they were all sailing into that old horizon
like the best of our unremembered dreams.
That was the first I saw, too, of the country
of desire—how there are places
that can be close and far, both at once.
A never-ending park that succeeds
a never-ending sea. My greatest question
was an old one: Will we get there before the End?
Will I love? Will I hold a girl’s neck and kiss her
and like it? Blessed, I feel, to be wrong.
Where I stand now is not the brink
of the discovery of love. I have lived
in that city. Battled with its coin laundries.
Eaten the noodles by the station. Passed out
in its train. That city and its war
of urban life has sunk. I’ve prayed
at the grave of old loves that vaguely smell
like that dog we all grew up with
who we couldn’t pet one last time
before they entered that cold room.
Look, the evening is sweeping the sky
to make room for morning. What comes next
is coming next. Here we all are. Survivors.
Loveless and newly young. Entire histories
of galaxies unfolding above us.
The world, repeating that trick it mastered
only yesterday. Spinning.