Up Next, Lahore Song

Now that you’re gone, I don’t write
anymore. Once it was all muses
with midnight snacks and now I
can’t even feel rancour for fear of
hurting you with it. Now that
you’re going, my art is siphoned out
to fuel small efforts in rare buildings
and foreign men looking for understanding.
Not even that – without you, this town
is a tombstone buzzing with flies
and they resound in my head like a
broken record – you were only
dancing in this small room, twirling
like a dervish beyond God,
you didn’t ask for this – This
end to a life you weren’t even sure
was born and look how now I
can’t even love in other directions,
how my mind is caught in its own
throat as it holds your hand
that’s leaving and is held by her hand
that’s never going away. Look
how the car screams down the road
as we three are bound together in the back
with every kind of love between us
and no succour – no relief from breathing
not even a careening telephone poll
to wrap the car around.

I didn’t ask for this permutation
where love that stays holds
no sway over love
that’s leaving, holds no candle
except to light the path that
you’re now going down.

Too much gravity ill becomes
what was created under tables
and on dance floors long forgotten,
stop this pulling, stop this loving,
I am ending now that you’re gone.

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