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Memories surface, thoughtless
as the rain on the metal roof where we listened,
as the heat released the scent of hay.
I see you standing
in my bedroom doorway,
from a farmer´s respect for sickness
Some years later I discovered
a yearning for the unfamiliar,
and left the fields
for forests and the West.
With nothing at risk, I discovered
the pleasures of changing weather.
After much time in that angular landscape
I settled on a mountain view
and the comfort of home.
One time, on a hike,
after more than a week in the wilderness,
I spoke to hear the sound of a voice.
I called you, after this
to described the view from an overlook,
where power lines stretched over the grass of the plains,
toward the horizon. I remember
the perspective seemed flattened by distance; the converging lines
seemed a trick of dimension.
I wanted to tell you that if I didn´t call more often
it was because I sensed we both understood silence
better than the strangeness of other lives.
Bordered as I was
by distances, I learned eventually to say, "Goodbye, I love you,"
at the end of a conversation, over the phone.
I remember the silence of your hesitation,
before you said goodbye.
Once you said the words back -
muffled, clumsily -
your voice trying too hard
to say too much.
At that sound, I knew your need,
your want, your unspoken longing
to shrink the complex geography -
to let the rain again lessen
the sun´s intensity.
A Case for the Idols