we are absences

A new poem to share, tinted by October consciousness.
Remembering lying awake in the early morning in my grandparents’
house in the San Joaquin Valley, knowing the creaking floorboards were
my family, up early making coffee and starting breakfast.


The floors in my condominium 
creak and squeak as the wood
under the carpet gives way under me.
The windows give out onto views
of the ocean and the coastal hills
and other dwellings, streets where
countless clustered lights are coming on.
I am not alone if I move about the place
and listen to the floors.
These noises bring back memories.
I wonder if they creak in houses we
have left behind, when we move through,
remembering. I hope they sag
under the weight of us who haunt,
and wake the living people, causing
fear. I used to wake there knowing
the sound was someone sleepless,
whom I loved. But something
has gone wrong and now we're gone.
We move invisibly through rooms where
we are absences and memories and dreams.
We creak the floors and make the curtains
drift, then settle into chairs in places
where the lights are long since out.
We sit and whisper about love, transparently.
Windows give out onto nothing but
the past, flat and endless, steeped in fog.
Kyle Kimberlin 


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