Monday, September 23, 2013

Before I Die

Last night I asked myself what things
I'd like to do before I die.

I'd like to be bolder. Speak out to people,
encourage them. Put words to things, put pen to paper,
name what each friend means.
Name strangers. Smile on the street.
Pick up trash, be ridiculously forgiving, pray for babies
unborn. Bless my parents, be attentive
to my brothers, be consciously quiet
more often.

Sing. Only songs I believe in. Leave recordings
of my voice for someday nieces, nephews. Keep a few
things, give the rest
Dress away from windows.
Dress pretty every day. Make clothes happy
to be worn, put them on like prayers,

Sacrifice my pride and laugh a little at myself,
more often. Be a klutz,
clean up after myself,
and after others.
Take showers, finally take care of my toenails. Wear no makeup,
but smell like herbs and spices. Bake 
double batches to give away, 
make extras for the freezer.

Read poems every day. Note the headlines, cut the fluff, only watch youtube 
for double-rainbow moments.
Own my issues. Tell it straight. Say the things (I think) maybe only I
struggle with. Ask questions. Be that nerd.
Write friends' names 
in my favorite books. 
Look for lonely people. Leave anonymous bouquets.

Trace my family's faces. Make smaller 
paintings. Print the photos, finally.

Listen to advice. Embrace silence. Sweat hard,
sleep early. Sleep out under the sky. Look into eyes.
Go barefoot.