Like any other morning, I wake up to muffled door rattles or slams,
And the crystal plea of a squeezed bladder–release, sweet release.
The blinds drawn and the clock radio dead for a few years now, I reach
For my phone to check the time: the usual 6:38 a.m. flashes retinally.
Taking inventory, I listen for a high schooler soon to fly out the door,
Perhaps her older sister stirring in poor sleep or kicking the disruptive
Cat out the door to purr in someone else’s ears, perturbations unleashed
For those battling anxiety and depression: IBS, TBI, PMS and US politics.
Challenging gravity’s rest, I aright myself and further assess the day’s
Bone placement as they all align, sink and press in allotted pegs, dips
And slots, and all measure properly without incident or undue notice.
My body has not joined in some stealth overnight rebellion for unpaid
Dues or sins of my youth just yet, and I take my first steps into morning.
Upright, leaning into space opening up to the bathroom door a mere six
Steps from my launch, I begin to feel it: the heaviness, not in step or
Weight, but an anchor-dragging shadow that resists verticality from
Scalp to balls of the feet, slowing the advancing doorway to a shuffle.
I know I’m already late, but the excursion’s effort, to pee and back,
Begs my re-bedding just for a hair’s breadth of a moment, I bargain.
Soon, the phone or entry door will vibrate with his questioning call or
Needy knuckles, reminding me that it’s time for his intravenous push
And his diabetes blood check and his arm wrap for his shower and his
Pill box re-filling as it is Monday: the array of multi-colored, go-gemlets
Shaped like candy paper dots or pez ovals popped out of a clown mouth.
The anchor widens and grows tentacles, linking chain to arms and chest,
Pulling down shoulders and the corners of eyes and lips no breath can re-
Vive, no gratitude check can lighten and release like an emptied bladder.
I glance out the now-opened blinds at the orange clusters in threes and
Fours, heavy with juice, hanging impossibly high at the thinnest branches
At the top, mightily fighting, irresistibly drawn downward while floating
The resistance between soaring, maintaining and falling: mass, space and
Time–all illusion, as is this overwhelming dread and angst that will dry,
Crumble and dust, blown into an afternoon breeze that kicks up after June
Grey dewy mornings drip, clear and stiffen to bolster tender leaves against
The love, need, hate, and anger over their circling heads tethered to a sun,
The same star that guides ships, unanchored, daylight drifting or swiftly
coursing waters tumultuous and calm to destinations charted yet unknown.
Another rudder-less morning steering me blindly, I have survived the first
Passage and make my way to the door, enjoying the last five, quiet seconds
Before the physical proof meets the prescient mood, while nothing is wrong.