Freelance General Content Matthew Yu Poetry Spring 2018 Writing Competition Voices of Liberal Arts

a memory

a memory
everlasting,
a line that twists into an oval, sprouting features, lips, contours
of a face I’ve known for so long, but can’t comprehend -so I stare
into its velvet black eyes, whose laugh pulls at my hair and
crinkles, echoing away into space like pieces of cellophane
that slide down the button nose, aquamarine tears tracing
a jaw of passion, deep set, proud and erect against the wind
like a stone statue eroded away by time, fading back into
soft skin like sand, fine and glistening and lively, twining muscles
that stretch and stretch down the arm, down the torso, rigid flesh
neither grey nor flush red nor color, but existing beyond the trumpeting
of voice that brings steady rhythm to the floor that houses the feet, tip tapping
like electrons, arcing across the prim cuticles of the fingers that electrocute me
at every touch;

a dream that haunts my soul, whispers in my mind where no
mouth lisps against the ear, provoking shivers down my spine like the
vastness of the body of the world, slumbering in grinding snores that shake
my heart, beating madly with someone else’s blood, filled with oxygen from lungs
that aren’t my own, borrowed from that face that dissolves into light
that warms the ground beneath the rough calluses of my feet, worn from
walking nowhere, a memory everlasting, encapsulating me in a world I dare know
not to be true, a figment of an emotion that stirred me like the moon raises the waves
and straightened the back of a boy ignorant of what was had and what was to come
and was suddenly gone, fleeting, returning, flowing in like the tide, flowing through my veins,
stirring the soft sand underfoot, a future clouded by paper tears and electrocuting fingers;

a beginning without end, started aeons ago with stones in the shape of humans,
stone forms with crystal tears and warm hands that moved the stars and planets
in their minds, specks of light in patterns imprinted into the eyes of today: capricious,
wandering, Orion’s club extending outwards; the hare bounds away,
and as Betelgeuse explodes in a fiery inferno, the world shatters and reforms into
shimmering glass, inconstant particles, inconstant worlds, eyes millennia old
yet never the same again; you never step into the same river twice, yet the same
water drank a hundred million years ago, slumber, slumber in the house of the earth
one and the same with the stone, a shape of a human forever coalesced
from memories of the wind, forever carving that face and whispering into its mind
and an aquamarine tear shed finds itself in the starlight, a memory everlasting.

—Matthew Yu

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