120

there’s frost on the windows
melting solid on the sill
a transparent canvas to draw on

I find you in the kitchen
coffee stained sweater sleeves
I spy footprints when the light hits
the hardwood floor just right;
yesterday’s fancy footwork
in the oven’s blinking light
always reminded of time passing, yet
dancing to it anyway

it’s 8:55am and I’m running out the door
another day at the office
I kiss you like I did last year
and every day since
just like ordinary

119

a bubble, burst
each time a year passes, I
feel it a little more
a sensation like hourglass sand
slipping through my calloused hands

I think of fizzles
champagne, popped
cold, crisp, unsweetened
an overflowing farewell to what we leave behind
and a toast to all we hope is ahead

118

In my life, I’ve heard stories that could crumble whole cities
some that tear us open and
dig at whatever is left
I’ve felt that secondhand sadness
when you are so overwhelmed by how much you feel
that you don’t think you can carry it all

I’ve cried with the ones I’ve loved
and said goodbye to things too good to be true
worlds that are oceans away
and lives I didn’t get a chance to live

I’ve watched people dust themselves off
wipe away tears and
move on, no fanfare

and god if that isn’t enough to know
that the world is cruel, but the world understands
maybe we don’t always get what we want
but we’re always in orbit, together
and I’m okay with that

 

 

The year is coming to a close, and I’m bringing this phrase with me: “and I’m okay with that.” Consider all the things going on in your life and all the battles you still have ahead, and add this phrase to the end of it. Here’s some of mine:

I’m a little sad to say goodbye, and I’m okay with that.
I haven’t figured it out yet, and I’m okay with that.

What are yours? Stay positive, friends. See you next year.

Love,
ELLE

117

life, lived through transition
of finding homes and making new ones
the inherent past of “returning home”
shows just how far we can stray.

I’ve met people who cried like clouds
who stuck to my skin like humidity
and sought to make a house of me

I’m learning to root my feet
into the earth, proclaiming
everything is home to me,
as long as I want it to be so.

116

the tinsel sound of
glassware, clinking
a liquid courage, building
skyscraper egomania

you pull like an apocalypse
slurred intention at your fingertips
I’m dancing to your beat
you’re singing along to someone else’s

114

cicadas to city dreams
so easily are we lost
in the bustle hustle

growing up suburban
sidewalks were canvases
meant only for my chalk
meant only for creatures I’d create

in the city, it’s vibrant
with people of diverse
colour and aspirations
of becoming even bigger than
what our parents could’ve ever wished for us

staying up late nights, I’m
drowning in all the things I swore I’d do
I’m reminded of the nights I’d spend sleeping,
dreaming of worlds I’d build and lives I’d change

it’s easy to think you’re not good enough
when there’s all this mess in front of you
but find quiet pockets in time
tranquility in a book, in a warm coffee
because regardless of wherever you are
(or wherever you wish you’d be)
there’s nothing wrong with where you are