i have stayed up late
smoking joints with my roommate again.
we lost most thursdays this way,
burning it from its end
until all we have left is a handful of vowels and hours before morning’s light.
“home is where the heart is,”
i say, setting my bourbon on Aubrey’s desk, “and the thing about that is,
how do you find your heart before it’s too late?”
the ice in my glass catches the lamplight
- sending it out in flashes again and again,
laving across his face, and before i reach the end
of my statement, he turns from his computer and rolls his eyes my way.
this is the way
things usually go between us, and it is
the closest i’ve come to home since the end
of my first one: coming home late
one night and fighting with my father again
in the kitchen, the bulb over the stove, under the hood, the only light.
i’ve yet to forget that light,
the way it seemed all soft yellows,
and if i could do it again –
well, it doesn’t really matter, the reality is
that it’s far too late
for that. regardless if you expect or want it, an end is an end.
i have had too many ends
already. watched the snuffing out of too much light.
it feels as if i am arriving a moment late,
that if i had taken another way,
the shortcut i’ve been meaning to try, i’d show up before everyone is
saying goodbye. again.
i will come in at an end.
the truth is,
only ever illuminates the way
that seems to make me late.
i’d like to not be late again
and for my wandering way to end.
aubrey’s light is still on.