Trees, In Fact

Under those gravel sheets
you drew a grave on a sheet.
A small boy surrounded by books and balls,
ambiguity hanging on fragile thorns.
The small nightlight was your dark blue tulip –
dark when unplugged –
hence, dark by nature.
I came to believe that
the grave was unplanned –
that circle was at first a ball,
a plate with pasta,
maybe sun?
Delirious, indeed,
but you’d seen in those books a solar flare?
Yes, you had, along with
old men, seas, delusions seen as fair.
Oh, I wish I had the boy,
I heard he uses daylight now
and proclaims watching at the flowers,
and watching at the ball games,
more reading, a small drink sometimes,
mountaineering,
village life.
Oh, I wish I had the boy.
“The boy with the grave” –
that is you, boy, in my thoughts,
and it was all predestined,
and you could help with nothing, boy,
because you were too weak, boy,
too weak to pull out
anything out of the sea
or the mountain,
or the sun –
you could pull out only yourself
out of the grave on the sheet
(it was all predestined)
and show it to your mom and dad,
and to their moms and dads,
so all could exercise
in mommying and daddying.
At that time, was there anyone
under the gravel sheets?
And how many of us were there, boy,
who were hiding under the bed,
surrounded by empty batteries?
One, two or three?
I came to believe that
the crack of dawn
saved us all
because it wasn’t grave but sun, boy,
and no one can fight them two suns
and them two boys,
all dead by emptiness,
all untouchable by substance.
All forever young.

Rumen Pavlov lives in Sofia, Bulgaria. He writes poetry (in Bulgarian and English) and short stories. His first book of poems in Bulgarian, An Opening, is already out.

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