for J.L.D.


Try not to breathe.
Try not to walk the highwire too fast
or spill tea
Try not to carve your name into any trees
on your way here – it's an omen
like a photograph where you smile just right
and then you vanish the very next night.

Try not to start any new books this year.
Try not to let yourself sink too deeply into the dark afternoon
or grimace heavily
or sigh with your eyes closed.


The moon goes missing one night
and it's alright because we mean it, deep down.

The part of your heartbeat will be played by
a smooth grey stone
high on a dark shelf.