To have missed

This hole in my heart –
A tired emptiness that longs for those things that have never belonged together,
I read messages from loved ones.

I remember a short woman
25% of me or better
but when did those memories start?

The smell of morning beer
to-the-point in a way that spilled tenderness
down the hill, into the pond that probably used to be there
in a time I can’t conceptualize

My questions aren’t hers and won’t be answered
The church she loved will never see my Easter,
though it’s just a 9 hour drive.

I long for the place that I belonged
but does this longing forsake my now?
jelly-colored lights and sleeping ghosts

You were never awkward, though the situation begged it.
It was like I never left.
Where is the spine, now, of the family I never had?

The news mixed together and dried as a thin lacquer.
Lurching out from appreciation
yet stifled from longing, I thought:

“God, I want to play Euchre.”

You were like a proper Christmas –
Warm, full of love, joyful,
thoughtful and earnest,
and I’m going to miss you.