November 06, 2009

"Carving"

This is a collaboration between Erin and me. We decided to write a poem together on the first of June, and we alternated, one of us writing a stanza and then sending it back to the other person for them to add their new lines. We finished on October 24 and did some last-minute touch-ups and edits.

It was a very cool experience to team up with Erin and put together this piece. She has talent, and she's so dedicated that I have to admit she made my job pretty easy. It was so much fun, and I think I'd definitely be interested in doing a project like this again.

Carving

yesterday,
sitting in a plum tree,
I saw a strange miracle

under cold sweet sky,
empty dark air
a shawl around shaking shoulders.

stars spell my name
not the name
you used to call me
with your rough lips
and uncomfortable laugh

I leave behind
what I can't remember
in a sea of
broken
lost
praying

even so,
I wonder if you knew
if you knew what it meant
how each word
tore
scratched
clawed

do you remember
how much it hurt?
what did i leave
b
e
h
i
n
d
?

but I look at the name
the one I will never tell you
and something inside me
whispers,
I will be okay

my shirt smells
of you. are we in a new
world?

I wish the answer were simple,
a soft "yes" whispered by weary lips
on orange-tinted breath

I wish I knew, wish this life
was in the air like strands of cold
fog drifting away

but all I have in this moment
is dirt and tree bark
under my fingers,
rough but real
unfair but tangible
something to hold onto
when you're not here

the days washed away beside
us, winters and springs and summers
that we never cared about.
in those black-and-white minutes,
we belonged to ourselves and
nobody else.

it was like being a child,
sand castles and strawberry ice cream
and knees skinned on pavement.
together we defied time,
two Peter Pans hand-in-hand.
 
I wish it were still
postcard-perfect. Maybe I want
something else. I'm not sure.
It's called insecurity, isn't it?—

—this wishing for things not there
when all I have to hold
are five letters
and a tangled possibility

copyright Erin McIntosh and Maya Ganesan (2009)

(Poetry Friday roundup at Wild Rose Reader)

7 comments:

January said...

Love these lines,

" your rough lips
and uncomfortable laugh"

and so many others.

Nice job.

Priya said...

Love it!

Myrna Foster said...

That was great! Collaboration is hard for me.

Georgie K. Buttons said...

Very nice. Reminds me of something...I like it.

cuileann said...

Your voices blend really well.

Singer said...

A very beutiful poem, :) I hope you know who this is.

Danielle said...

I never commented! Gah! But I LOVE this. LOOOOOVE. I want to do it too, haha.