Wendy Xu

Years of Worry

From the unfamiliar porch I touch
the sunflowers and wonder
about their delicate health. This
and other acts of longing
keep me up at night: that while one person
suffers the past alone
the world is melting towards us.
Today someone I love will push
through a crowded room
to tell me that his friend has died
and who are we to continue living out
our momentary awe?
I see darkness in the face
of everyone who is wounded
by music and other representations
of just wanting to hold someone
in a bed. Later on the floor
of the cold house holding his hand
I will think about my selfish fantasy
of being heard and how every day
it comes more true even now
as I transmit my worry
to you across the endless page.
When one thing is finished
we pause. We are like trees in the season
of greater smallness, limbs alive
and orange with light.
A person must speak their love
to others in a room
of the world while it stands.
Thank god it is still possible to drive
across America chasing
some music. All that I mean is here
is a place for standing.
One hundred ships of panic drown
themselves in your ocean. I have suitcases
good for something better
than the phone. Show me a newer
urgent kind of knowing.