Give me these moments back/Give them back to me

by Amy Turn Sharp



Walking round town today
thinking about my poetry audition later this month
I am so far from my poems
so deep into stringing together characters and sentences
that spin
I am working on some old poems today
some that still deserve attention
and kindness
and light
the boys are resting quietly and I am searching now
for that girl again
that girl who sat in cafes and bars
and plucked words from midair and
lined them up like small soldiers across the page

I
if I had an atlas I would
crack the spine
look up
the miles between us
the exact mileage
but I already know
many more miles
than I can imagine
can’t walk there
can’t swim

II
People talks about our minds, more specifically our brains and how people, places, and things are always in the corners. That’s not really true. The truth is far better. You are everywhere. In my hippocampi, my sorting center, which stores and rejects data that bombards me, like the note on my desk, a reminder to send you a poem. In my basal ganglia and cerebellum, which process the information I need to do routine procedures like picking up a pen or licking a stamp that will mail small envelopes to you. In my cortex, the beautiful layer of neurons that house sounds, smells, and images allowing me to picture your face and hear the train that rattles by your house. And my frontal lobes, the most noble part of my brain, where my conscious behavior, actions, and decisions are--my access to you. My complete schema of you. Where I can retrieve and hold you suspended in clarity. You see, there are no dusty small corners of my mind and I don’t need an atlas to measure what truly matters.