Syntax Issue 10
Denver Syntax
{i pictured my self growing old}
  jason hardung

(for Severine)

I never got to tell you about the dream I had--

I was old and worn but distinguished, smiling

and you, a light with bright edges

softly grounded in the flesh

sitting by my side, your cheek on my shoulder.

I dreamt of my funeral many times before,

this was the first time I ever

pictured myself as an old man.

the future was something people talked about

not something I could see happening to me.

Until you.

You had my back

you held my hand.

You promised you'd never leave.

If there was never such a place as heaven before,

there is now.

Simon Peter met you at the gate

with Saint Augustine

Joe Strummer pulled you away

and told you to leave those squares alone.

They say you are watching me now

so let me apologize for the way I've been living.

I'm doing a little better. I will clean my apartment soon.

I wander around town like a refugee

passing thousands of blank faces

lucky enough to be filled with blood

but still more lifeless than the ashes you left behind.

Your silver rosary hangs around my neck

not to talk to God (we aren't on good terms right now)

but to have a piece of you resting against my heart,

only seven layers of flesh separates us.

Jesus and his cross swing against my gut

as I fight my way into the future.