Originally published in The Molehill, Vol. 1
What I Would Now Like to Imagine
I would like to imagine right now-
Sitting on a weathered bench in a flower garden-
That we are all together again
On our way to a symphony in the park.
We have all of our teeth,
Our skin bears no marks of any surgeries,
We have neither lost nor gained too much weight,
There are no machines attached to us,
And we are all young.
We will set out our blanket and lawn chairs,
And I will ask if anyone wants to play soccer.
We will all say yes.
We will not be too hungry,
Nor will we have just eaten,
And feel light-headed after only a few minutes of play.
We will get thirsty and hot,
And break to drink water,
Dribble it down our shirts, and
Dump it on our heads.
Someone- perhaps Mom-
Will have the idea to take off her shoes and socks
And will walk in the fountain,
Cocking one eye all the while
For someone who might come along and ruin our fun,
“No dancing in the fountain, please.”
But no one comes to say such a thing.
This business with the fountain
Will break up the game of soccer,
But I will be happy, and not be able to think of
A better reason to break up a good game,
except, perhaps to get frozen custard at Nick’s
(And Nick’s will still be in business).
Our laughter will sound,
When it happens, like
A man riding a horse on the other side of a patch of trees:
Though he is hidden half of the time-
Now by a clump of leaves,
Now a limb,
Now, a trunk-
He is riding all the while,
A thunder of hooves, and flapping cloth.
We will have forgiven one another so completely–
Without forgetting offenses–
That to see one another’s faces
Will be, finally, to understand
What love is.
This is how I like to imagine it will be.