You Gave Me the Moon

You gave me the moon.

I came to you, heart-scarred and bleeding.
Words tumbled out; we stepped on them as dust beneath our feet
and walked on.

I fixed our dinner—
it came from the oven, edges burnished by heat
Steam sighing as our forks dipped in—
and could think of nothing to say.

I said something anyway,
So that the silence would not fall and crush us all.
And you saw my eyes.

The evening passed, not gently as it does when life fits,
But in halts and forced starts:
as I played out an ill-fitting role in a bad production.
Pretending it was real.
And you moved beside me as if I were Someone.

And, at last, we sat side by side,
I secreting tears of knowing myself not known.
And you saw.

And then I could bear my waking no longer,
and pushed the toothbrush into my mouth,
counting in foam the moments till I could be unknown even to myself.

“Come here.”
“I am brushing my teeth.”
“I know. Come here while you do it.”

You opened the blinds in our darkened room.
And showed me the moon, slatted and shining in the black sky.
It was neither yellow nor silver, but something other.
Wholly itself and sharp in its sheen.

We lay and watched its otherness.

Between bouts of troubled waking, I slept.
I woke early, while the sky still brushed charcoal across our blinds,
and I remembered, even before the day began—

You gave me the moon.

For my husband, David


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