The song comes on, in the random,
shuffling way life occurs,
the happenstance of seeing one another
across a parking lot and you
studiously ignoring or maybe
running away. The song comes on
and I’m confronted with the
old decision to ignore, or to skip,
or to turn the whole thing off.
The song comes on, and once
I’d hit Repeat because once
I connected it with you. Even now
I do, seeing you in the long ago,
before the collapse of
a make-believe house constructed
on some fantasy Sandman’s leavings.
All those nights of
Repeat…Repeat…Repeat.
So the song comes on and I reach
for the Skip button to run from
its first two bars. I know each beat
and note by two memories. And I pause.
The heartbeat of it, the voice,
they don’t belong to you anymore,
they belong to the song.
And the song remains the same.
I’m the one who’s changed,
Turn it up.

– Joseph Hesch

2015, poem, Joseph Hesch, All rights reserved

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