I spent so many Saturdays in my father's woodshop
that every Friday night I dream of sawdust.
One learns certain things in a woodshop
that cannot be learned anywhere else in the world.
I forget that some things are not common knowledge,
for example: Water on wood that is in the ground
means life. Water on wood that is not
will ruin everything. I know this as surely as I know
that the sun will rise on Sunday and I'll realize
(with a sadness) I don't have wood glue stuck
to my fingertips, as surely as I know I've loved
my father like trees love the sun.
I fall in love with geographical locations,
with certain songs whose harmonies stroke me,
with dishes of food and colors of sky.
I almost fell in love with a boy once.
I would have given him my love, given him
a fighting chance at staking a flag
on the left side of my chest. Seriously:
he could have been a tattoo. It was like that.
And you, dear friend, we've spent so many nights
up until four, doing nothing but laying in bed
cuddling and laughing and talking about this boy
you've loved, that boy I fucked, this girl
we hate and why and where and how many times
and the natures of our beings and what it means
to truly live. I trusted you with everything.
I thought you knew everything I knew.
But you watched over my house while I was away
and you didn't know that thing about water
and wood that is not alive, and you took
the chopsticks that the boy I almost loved
brought me from some small country in Asia
when he went there with the girl who is not me
and traveled for a month and it was the one thing,
the consolation prize I had from our almost-love
and you left them sitting in dishwater in my sink.
They are broken now. I would cry over them,
but tears, as it happens, are made of water, too.