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if i could

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i would take this moment
grasp its glistening edges
let it flow through my fingers
like wet sand
cup it in my hands,
bring them to my face,
and feel its comfortable warmth

i would find a small silver box
with a hinged lid, a tiny lock
plain but uncommonly beautiful
slowly - carefully - gently
pour in the memory
close the lid, lock it
and lay it on the top shelf to rest

then

i would take the small silver key
string it on a red ribbon
loop the ribbon around my neck
tie it tightly, keep it with me
under my clothes, next to my heart
wear it as a reminder
and never remove it

i would carry that ribbon with me
as the years slipped past: caught
in the current of time's swift river
it would stay around my neck
until the ends frayed
the color faded
and i frayed and faded with it

then

i would take the small silver box
on the day that i felt most alone,
after my mind - body - spirit
left me in a parade of desertion
hold it in my gnarled hands
unwrap the ribbon from my neck
and firmly grip the key

I would slide this key into the lock,
now spotted with rust,
and gently turn until it stopped
i would lift the lid
watch as my quick breaths
rippled the surface of the memory
and bask in its enchanting glow

then

i would slide my cupped hands
slowly - carefully - gently
into the box
fill them with the memory
raise them above my head
pour it over me
and experience this moment

one - more - time



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