I stand here in the smoke of grief
trying to locate the fire.
When your flame crackles and rises skyward,
I bask in its warmth,
but when it dies down, like now,
into an almost imperceptible ember,
I tremble and blow gently,
all my hopes in that thread of breath
going your way.
How do I explain the passion you kindle
when your spirit fills you with heat and light,
when your eyes spark
with the flash of your buck toothed grin
and easy belly laugh?
Anand, named for bliss, you have explored
the fullness of life’s extremities,
heard the song of Spirit and sung along.
We have danced together to that melody.
Then with a change of wind or fullness of moon,
spirit snatchers suck the fire
from your belly, leave you cold.
Darling, I have sought so often
deep in your wheat-field eyes for sun
to be reflected back to me and found only shadows.
Where do you go? I ask, but you shake your head sadly.
I want to believe your spirit is called away to do service,
perhaps give solace to a starving child in Africa
or lend your sparkle to the faltering stars.
I want to believe the man who sleeps for hours,
too weary to move,
that his spirit is busy elsewhere, showering fireworks of love
wherever it is needed.
There are clinical explanations
for the great arc of your moods.
You’ve heard of colossal stellar explosions
and the black holes
in their wake.
I’m writing this because you do not call.
I’m writing to spare you my tears
for they may soak
the last glowing coal of your heart
and damp it out.