After I Leave

After I leave you
I don’t adjust right away
to the familiar things
I return home to
and I don’t stop thinking
about the reasons
we work
and the reasons we don’t—
and the reasons we don’t
have nothing to do
with a deficiency of love
or lack of joy
or misplaced hope,
but the measurement
of life invested elsewhere—
in those familiar things
that breathe and need
and trust
that I’ll come home
after I’ve had time alone,
which is the lie I tell
when I walk in the door
with stories of
how rejuvenating it was
to spend time in nature—
solo—
and I feel guilty
for not wanting
a welcome home kiss
because I want yours
to be the last one on my lips.

 

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
4-3-17

“The Brook” by John Singer Sargent, 1907

 

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