dreamt my life was leaving last night.

panic threw itself on top on me – crushing my breath.

soul escaped my fingertips, fled from my

O shaped mouth; much like what he likes to draw,

minus the teeth, minus the red.

dreamt my life left me; flat like a sheet, empty like a shell.

it was tired of being anemic and pale.

motionless, I watched it walk away.

tried to scream, plead for it to come back,

but my cold mouth froze up, still shaped like an O.

felt the wind rush over me one last time.

instantly made me regret that I had to go.


that foam hung around for a long time

this time

tickled my arms

tickled my nose

so I couldn’t breathe

reminded me of that time long ago

I held my breath when I was born

held it so long

that they told him I died


when he told that story

it was the only time

I ever saw him cry

when she be


When she be coming for me

in the wee hours of the morn

it’ll be the same as

when I had no breath

the moment I was born


When she be coming for me

wearing her soft gown of white

riding the tails of wind

in the blackest part of night


She be coming for me

the dreams foretold

left me hiding scared

under a blanket

with arms scarred up and old


She’ll leave the door open

as if in a trance

the zephyr will try to usher her back

I’ll whisper for one more chance


When she be coming for me

I’ll hear the gale swoosh down the hall

sound so deafening

you won’t even hear my call


When she be coming for me

her hair still wet with dew

kindness shining bright as stars

her eyes the palest hue


She be coming for me as

old man Winter blows in the snow

the floorboards will creak and crack

I’ll witness the last of my tears

before I have to go


When she be coming for me

in the wee hours of the morn

off and away I’ll be


when we meet again

dear one 

we’ll just have to

wait and see




Today, this day, 10 years ago she watched her father die in a cold hospital room during a Nebraska winter. 

Today, this day, she decided to go to the beach.  

This woman, while resting in an umbrella of warmth, heard a man shuffle by; wearing a blue shirt, his profile reminded her of her father.

The one that could grow a red beard and whose eyes got greener when he was mad.  The one whose laugh could wake the dead and the one who hid his sadness with a mask.  Until that day – she got the call that he wanted to end it all.  One week he would stay at a different hospital, decades before his unluckiness would take him.  Decades before the cancer devoured his laugh and made him blow up like a fish.  Decades before she saw his last breath.  

The man she saw today was shorter than her father, but they shared the same hair color and smile.  She was sure his eyes were green and that they sparkled like sand beneath her feet.  She would close her eyes and try to recall the ghostly memories of her father.  The way he shifted his weight while talking on the telephone.  Right foot, left foot, with a sort of rocking motion.  The way he sprayed a cloud of Aqua Net on his hair every morning.  And the way he never seemed to dry off his hands after washing them; he just shook them in the air while her socks soaked up the water. 

Between reading, trying to remember, and wave gazing; she spent a great deal of time watching one particular seagull.  The fat one with a long neck who bellowed for the others to stay away.  The one who looked irritated at the smaller, scurrying birds that busily ran after their shadows.  The one who approached her expectantly as she ate her honey mustard pretzels and then was chased by a little girl who reminded her of her daughters.  The one with the peach and blue bathing suit.  The one with the ponytail that looked like one long curl down her back.  The little one with all the power to chase the seagull around and make him soar away.  

This woman longed to borrow the little girl’s happiness, borrow her smile, borrow her power to make the seagull ascend.  Especially today, this day, when 10 years ago she was forced to say goodbye to her father.