If I Knew - Poem by Sophie Sawyer
If I knew your name
I could thank you for the card you sent.
Every syllable bled with repent,
Small words can have an impact.
And if I had a face in a frame,
I could pick you right out of a crowd,
Your movements would drown to one sound,
Every blink would be a song, in fact.
And if I knew where you were,
I could return the card you sent me,
And my frail pen would leak faithfully
Of every drear and every tear
That I refused to leave open.
And if your memory weren’t a blur,
I would know why I’ve been missing someone;
I’d realize why all this had begun.
And I’d remember playing tag
When we were children.
If I accepted my sins,
Maybe I wouldn’t have wished for this,
Since those years spent I can’t reminisce
They faded into the haze along with you.
And so, again the time begins,
When I try to erase the blur,
When I want to know who you were,
When I strive to remember your face,
When I beg to call your name,
And when I start to see your ghost appear, too.
And I start to cry.
I reach out and grab your white hands,
And I feel like I can actually understand
Just how many pierces it took for me to break down.
But you just pass by,
And this faint smell of yours stays with me,
Holding me down and speaks to me calmly.
This black dog mocks me as it spins my heart around.
Then I just forget,
Of when I screamed for you to return,
And my dormant hopes started to burn.
As if they would glow for you forever.
And I am silent,
Because my heart is aching too greatly,
And you seem to come back a lot lately
Yet you crisp into the dark, like an ember.
If I knew your name,
I’d know why I asked in the first place.
And as I read the card again, I yearn for a face
Since all these tears seem to bleed for a stranger,
Someone, I wish, I could only remember.
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