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Three Beads

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When we first found them,
they were dark brown with a false stain,
that smoothed any and all discoloration.
They were sanded to an undeniable roundness,
then doused, with a perfectly polished finish.

We took those beads, held them in our hands,
and in our pockets,
and we traveled with them,
talked and walked with them,
sang with them,
sometimes we even cried with them.

At dawn we’d pick them up off the ancient nightstand,
where they sat the night before, waiting as we drifted into
deep sleep of unguarded dreaming.

One late night, we burned sloppy letters
into them- spelling a simple fragmented word-
inhaling the sweet smoldering smoke
trailing off from them-
our careful little tattoos.

From a box of old crafts,
we collected lost scraps
of mismatching dark leather,
which we cut into thin strips, and used,
to weave our beads together.

With little inventive braids
we did everything-
stringing them, tying them, fastening them-
to hold them together.

We stare at them, and can’t remember them
before; for they’ve faded in the blistering friday sun,
their finish has run off in the water,
now they are just flawed little pieces wood,
and the simple, silent scars we etched upon them.

When dark inescapably falls,
we can’t see them,
but we know they are there,
side by side.
Together.





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