28 March, 2010

Your Scar

My fingers roam
the soft flesh of your brow,
feel a minor ridge above your right eye.
It’s a small scar
not like the scuff of soldiers’ boots
or the woodcutter’s axe in a tree.
It’s an almost invisible seam
from a long-ago car accident.
No train derailment.
No plane crash on takeoff.
No guy taking what defeats him
out on you.
Just a collision from behind,
your head jolted forward,
smacked against the windshield,
a wound, some blood,
five minutes waiting
for your heart to slow,
your head to focus,
your eyes to turn toward
your father at the steering wheel.
It’s the tiniest healed incision.
Nothing like hearing in a hospital bed
how your old man didn’t make it.
Or your mind reliving that cruel impact
every night until forever.
It’s a trivial scar
that marks the constant anniversary of
everything, everyone’s okay,
it happened, let’s get on with it.
I hold you close
and kiss that scar,
ahead of time if need be.

~~ John Grey