My Only Moment
For you, I awoke a voice long silent in sleep.
The one that betrays the deepest of my secrets
and tells all my stories, written on forgotten days
that each waft away in the shallows of memory;
the voice that knows each unremembered dream
I have struggled in vain to capture and keep.
The first speech came in a low, slow burble,
shaped as if a new tongue that I alone interpret.
It staggered softly in fragments and turns of phrase
from the silent chamber of my nascent thoughts,
released anew from my reverie, on broken breaths
that cried as loudly as a weakened throat allows.
So my love, these few, fevered, stumbling syllables
came clumsily into your untrained ear like nonsense;
sounds too round for you to grasp and pull apart,
to find inside subtlety the sense they could make.
You must have thought me drugged or still asleep,
turning away as you did from my prayer, my plea.
How could you hear over your quickened footsteps
that these quaking words came in time more calmly?
Hoarseness melted, becoming my native baritone,
my tender vibrato that finally sang out your name.
The encore you left behind would have warmed
both of us, offered in a voice that I awoke for you.
About the Poem
This poem comes from a disappointed heart. After a long time doubting I would feel the depth of affection I'd felt in a previous relationship, I met a guy on the other side of the country who convinced me that I could. But awkward communication took a toll that only one of us was willing to mend. This is how I mark that spot along my road.
This poem was previously unpublished. It was finished March 27, 2003.