Once someone gave me advice.
If I lend someone a thing,
I must never expect it back,
so I should only give what I can do without.
If they return it, it will be a gift.
Wisdom, I thought.
Yet, it does not apply to stealing.
For if someone takes a thing,
I have a right to expect it back,
to hunt it down to the ends of the Earth
and to seek vengeance upon he who took it.
I think here of my little dog.
When she went missing,
I thought the Universe stole her.
The quantum ray read,
“Frankie is here. Frankie is not here.”
Her electrons spilled through two slits.
In one world she was with me,
and in the other she was no more,
like my parents who have gone too.
I was angry; I had been mistaken.
The Universe did not steal her,
it merely borrowed her.
To pet, I presume,
because she is so cute
and has a good heart.
After the wind had ruffled her hair,
and the skies had looked down upon her glowingly,
and the sun washed its rays in her golden fur,
the Universe returned her to me,
stinking of garbage but otherwise unharmed.
Mind-body goes the mantra.
But what of body over mind?
To will the body into suppliance is a difficult endeavor,
for it’s an unwieldily thing.
It doesn’t want to do what I tell it,
like a spoiled child throwing a tantrum, its opinion is woefully strong.
I’m hungry-I’m thirsty-I’m tired.
To deign a leg to move gracefully behind the head.
Oh, the impossibility!
And then the other.
Cross, darn feet!
The body’s grudge isn’t the pain of creaking hips; those open like rusty hinges.
Nor is it the fear of falling backwards; I trust that my arms will catch the floor.
It just likes to whine,
especially when I make it fly,
though at the moment when no part of me is touching the ground, I say,
And it does, an obedient dog.
Then my hands catch myself before I land,
so as to not break a toe.
Because I have heard that can happen.
You sip your rose
as pink petals swirl around you,
ripped from the branches
of a cherry tree by a solar wind
that tears through the streets.
You text your tattooed friend
to meet you at the outdoor cafe
when the wind tips your glass
with its oily claws,
leaving sticky flowers on your lap.
You laugh and order another.
You’re right to enjoy this moment of summertime in springtime.
Or are you?
Behind you, the wind gathers strength,
and the flowers turn in an eddy at the intersection,
pummeling the windshield of a convertible that rounds the corner, swarming a woman as she crosses the street.
This is how the end begins,
with a warm day, an unnatural wind, and the flight of flowers.
There is nothing to do about it,
except to say, “oh well” to your apathy.