Monday, May 19, 2014

You Left Me Here To Write The Poems

the pen seems too heavy
most times
an immovable object
which you hefted with ease
even in your struggles
you scrawled
and you left me here
to write the poems.

you walked like
gravity wasn't doing its job
pounding your solid impression
into an unyielding earth

you stated your opinions
as if i should accept them as fact
and through my indignation
i hope you know
i mostly agreed

you were the only person
i've met so far
who could wear the grandest clothes
and still appear a disheveled mess
yet still pull the look off
like some ignoble gentleman
you would grow a full beard
and wear wool
in the oppressive summer heat

you would write me into a corner
on comics we worked on together
each and every page
i can't believe you blew up Antarctica
on me
and killed the whole team
in the first issue

all your superheroes
wore blazers and scarves
or neckties
and chain-smoked cigarettes
and never did anything heroic
just drowned in their own mire and self-doubt

you made music sound better
when you were playing it
with your awkward dancing
even though you never let me choose
what i wanted to listen to
luckily you had
good taste

you were aries
you swashbuckled
through life

you were a cigarette connoisseur
with an opinion on every brand
and proud of the fact
you been smokin' since the '80s

you walked straight through
the petrified forest
instead of taking the path
you had no interest
in the grand canyon
you slept on every picnic table
across the united states
you refused ever to learn
which is left
and which is right
making you the worst navigator
i ever drove with

you got us kicked out
of a titty bar
for telling the ladies to put some clothes on
you were crumpled
at the bottom of the stairs
out the back door
where i found you
i sat down next to you
just as crumpled

you liked obscure things
because you liked obscurity
you were the master of chaos
the king of nothing
a lion tamer to the stars

you had a thing for elevens
and the untold power
they contained
the number
haunts me now
but gives me comfort

you would call me
on the phone
our conversations
were never less than
an hour
and were essentially
about nothing
but meant everything

not everyone understood you
or even tried
i defended you always
to those who would judge
for i was the lucky one
to recognize
the uniqueness of your soul
too brilliant to ignore
or contain

i still say
with a sigh
they don't make bradfords everyday
and wholeheartedly
believe it

i'm truly blessed
because you let me in
accepted me as a friend
considered me a brother
and put up with as much of me
as you doled out of you

and i hope you know
i was there until the end
when you drew your last
i squeezed your hand
and watched you fade
and have never been
the same since
the world is just
a bit more empty now
smaller and cruel

as angry as i am
at you
for leaving
i am twice as angry
at myself
for failing to save you
like we talked about
i will try to forgive myself
for not being
the superhero
we used to read about

so now
i will save myself
in your memory
in your stead
i will leave this sickness
that we seem to share
far behind
and you're welcome
to join me along the ride
and i can only hope
you've become
a better navigator

i'm a ghost writer
for a ghost
like you said
and i'll try to listen

because after all

you left me here
to write the poems.