Lower the Lifeboats
Write down who you are.
That was what we were told to do
so that in the future we would remember.
Write down what you value
your hopes for your children
Write a list of things you would never do
Because it’s possible in this new
that you will do them.
Know who you are. Know what you believe.
know how you fight and how you run.
And now, four years later,
aging and anxious
I pace the floorboards of my small apartment
picking up memories,
holding them like moths in my cupped hands
asking them if they are okay
Are we okay? Are we still okay?
I text people that I love just to tell them I love them
over and over again
as if that will make some difference
as if the flood waters outside
brackish and black
have not been rising for years now
as if they are not lapping against the walls
as if my hands alone could hold back the waves
or stop the bleeding
that pumps with each heartbeat
as if they could save even one precious life
as if we could ferry ourselves out of this darkness
find new land
lower the lifeboats
and sail away