Marriage

A poetry collection by Steve Gerson, December 2019

“My wife and I are celebrating our 50th wedding anniversary this month. These poems reflect that love and constancy.”

Steve Gerson, an emeritus English professor from a Midwestern community college, has been married for 50 years. He writes poetry and flash about life’s dissonance and dynamism. He’s proud to have published in Panoplyzine (winning an Editor’s Choice award), The Hungry Chimera, Toe Good, The Write Launch, Route 7, Duck Lake, Coffin Bell, Poets Reading the News, Crack the Spine, White Wall Review, Abstract, Pinkley Press, and In Parenthesis.

To part through time as if it were waves

If I had not met you,
If when passing in the hall
You had dropped your purse
Or I had stopped to adjust my glasses,
Our glances diverting like a surf’s erratic dance,
If I had read a book whose sentence led me to
Contemplate mountain peaks rather than ocean depths,
If you had married someone else
Whose orbit momentarily eclipsed yours,
His gravity shifting the tides,
If our children had been born to other parents
On other parallel planes,
If I breathed water instead of air,
I, somehow, would emerge on land,
Gain footing, part through time as if it were waves,
Feel your presence like the beam of a lighthouse,
And find you.


Threading the measure of two beats

Touching your pulse through a translucent wrist,
Tracing the flow toward your heart,
Is as a journey from east to west,
An ocean voyage for spices and gold.

The rhythm in your veins, like Blue Nile to White,
Converges with mine to fall and rise,
Breathing like breath, our chests heaving,
An embrace, our arms reaching.

The beating pace of blood through your skin,
A fragile thrum of destination,
Threading the measure of two beats,
Maps like mileposts old to new.

Your life my touch surging as one
You Us You Us You Us You Us


Boundless

Imagine earth’s rivers overflowing,
Not into surrounding hillsides,
But beyond earth’s latitudes,
Beyond earth’s atmosphere,
Into space, earth unrestrained.

Imagine earth’s oxygen expanding,
Not room to room or within the oceans,
But bursting through the density of galaxies,
Exploring like luminescent fingers into darkness,
Earth-bound molecules igniting stardust.

Our love is boundless,
Not contained within sinew or capillary,
Not confined by vertebrae or soul,
But suffusing the air with radiant motes,
Like words hovering above a page.


Nothing/Something

Nothing.
Standing at a sill,
Separated by an interstice of charged air
I brought nothing;
You brought nothing.

Yet, from nothing, we emerged.

Not as quickly as a light turned on,
A tendril sprout,
Boards squared into a structure,
A moon’s voyage.

But slowly,
From plain to plateau,
From hillock to mountain.

My edges pushed against your edges, uplifting.
My senses lay on your senses,
As sediment upon stratum.

In time,
Weathering, fusing, reaching,

We built
Something.