A Poem For Immortality

Immortality used to be

a birth-pink cordiform face,

fresh from my daughter’s womb.

Immortality is doomed

and he is only 4 years old, at this moment;

he cannot know what is coming.

Immortality has not read the last Book of Revelations

and Immortality does not concern himself with science, or with unnatural, natural disasters. Or with roofs falling in

on the entirety of lives.

Immortality has no idea he is a refugee.

But, swaddled tight as baby Moses, he fled, right along with his mother; covered 900 miles of highway to get to me,

just to stay for a spell

of collective relief, but I sighed mine out the loudest upon their journey’s end.

You see, Immortality just lost his home

to a man-made-monster-hurricane.

but he does not complain;

he’s too busy building kingdoms from cardboard boxes.

His curiosity overflows my cup;

I want to gift him all the answers with Fair-Trade-chocolate-kisses;

I want to build him a fort of adamantine blankets

and let him be just a boy. and forever.

(Try convincing a boy whose job is just to be. and forever.

that global warming is of any threat to him.)

My home has been an ice-age of separation; but for now

it thaws into a new routine of make-believe and Spongebob on the television

each morning. Immortality eats scrambled eggs with bacon for his breakfast —

bare-chested, barely hunger-tethered, and for nothing more than moments. I will cherish every forkful.

Immortality is fuel-efficient. He prrrs along for hours, once he re-fuels; there can be no stopping him.

We let his weary mother sleep

through a first pot of coffee and an opening production.

I pack myself into the recliner. The venue is now full.

Immortality captivates his audience with capricious narration.

Immortality cannot pronounce his R’s; the crowd goes wild with adulation.

Immortality’s play is set in a cardboard box and the actors are his mass-manufactured-in-China-plastic-dinosaurs;

he is their great toy-dinosaur god

as he roars out their names, each one

between great belly laughs of thunder.

His storm abruptly cancels the prehistoric play, mid-rumble,

Immortality decides he is a dog now.


I want to be like Immortality; feeling everything

but the gravity of its time; not knowing I’m just a made-up word

in a world of make-believe that has to die.

Every new and last thing is poem-worthy and significant with Immortality’s visit. In real-time, I do my best to catalogue these to-be memories.

I know this reconciled space is using itself up, and quickly

I count the days off, extending

efforts of multiplication,

but the answer cannot be greater than 7.

It is final.

I am grateful. I am heartsick.

I mourn all the morning of their exodus.

I cry my good-byes. My heart bursts, twice;

but I laugh anyway, for Immortality’s sake.

I want him to remember me that way, and while there is still time

I just tell them to be safe. . .

They are gone now; my two refugees returning to their war-zoned-home, determined to re-build their destruction.

For now, I can do nothing, except to regret the ending of Immortality’s visit;

but as soon as these heart-tears are dried, I will make up a poem to re-live it.







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