Jacob Louis Moeller
We will find you, fickle friend,
where the grass parts ways for snakes
where wealthy women make talk
of the men who feed them—
dressed in summer colors
with matching drinks and cackled laughter,
we will find you in the song notes
they sing to each other
when sunlight gives way to moonshine.
We will search the spaces between
lightning strikes and thunderclaps—
underneath the bed sheets
of a boy who won’t stop reading
when the lights go out.
We will look for you
inside half-empty cereal boxes,
or perhaps we will dig you
from the sandcastles
we buried in our birthday cards.
Where Mozart breathes
through the fingers of a child
where his mother’s tears fall
as he plays for her that first time.
Wherever his father drinks that last drink
and beneath the floorboards of the home
he broke with the backside of an open fist—
where water drips red with blood.
Where tiles chipped like a tooth
in the mouth of a household
grow moldy from the inside out,
where books beg to be read aloud,
words beg to be let out
from the birdcage chest
hiding beneath the breasts
of a wasted woman who thought
she found you last time she lost herself.
We will find you in ourselves
the next time we try moving on—
the next time we paint our faces
with stage makeup and make up
reasons to look like old photographs
we’ve hidden from new lovers,
the next time you love us
we will have climbed a few miles
in search of god.
Not your God but ours—
the one that carves its home in the poem
that beats beneath our breastplates,
that makes sense of signal fires
we set as warning signs
for the times we forget you are still coming—
for the times we find your footprints
in the gardens we use
to grow our spines back.