Standing Behind You In The Bathroom, A Poem by Chris Russell

You weren’t right. I knew how to have fun,

You just didn’t inspire me.

That soap we loved was beautiful,

because you didn’t need to eat it in order to taste it.

Maybe I didn’t spend long enough standing behind

you in the bathroom and brushing your hair.

Maybe I didn’t tell you that you were pretty

as often as I should have.

All I know is, because Dickinson was wrong

when she referred to the heart wanting what it wants,

almost every morning now, these last 10 years

after hearing of your death,

there isn’t this intrusion of thought that haunts me

whenever I think of you, where I’m imagining

playing hide and seek with you in a beach house

beside an ocean, because I know this is exactly

the way I wanted you to open me up and find me.

Instead there’s just a feeling of turning some anonymous

corner and coming upon this beautiful girl

I sense loved me once, perhaps in an earlier life,

and this intense sensation of being helpless

to do anything about it, as she fixes her blouse

and looks up at the sky, appearing to only have eyes

for God.

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