if the light streaked
on the wall

if the rain fell
like shards of glass

if to walk into
that deep forest
the grass the trees
so thick no 
light can shine

if there is no
no sunlight

if to walk &
then to drag
past the limit
of my mortal chains

if to gaze into
that enveloping

if to feel
the weight
i cannot bear

if to close
my eyes
the sea that morning
when i could taste
the honey
of your smile

if to be
a bird

if to catch
that moment
in time

if to hold on
a second
of eternity

if to linger
in the shadows
dripping down
the wall
the night that gathers
like dew
in darkness

This past year and a half has been incredibly difficult, with the coronavirus pandemic exacerbating the stresses and anxieties we feel on a daily basis. When I read this NYT article on a 14-year-old boy’s suicide off New York City’s Vessel, all I felt was a profound shock. I couldn’t move, or think, really — I was frozen in that moment. Then came a heavy sadness, setting in slowly like sea fog subsuming the land in a thick, white silence.

I knew that I could not articulate my feelings except through poetry. I tried writing, but the words would not come. I tried, but whatever I wrote down I scratched out, full of despair and frustration.

 But when I woke up the next morning, I realized the earth outside my house was the poem I was searching for: the sky, the sea, the forest, the birds, were mourning in the form of a poem. They were inviting me to read, to become a part of, that poem — as I now invite you.