you will never grow old

don’t get me wrong, juan ponce de leon.
you see, i don’t actually believe that you’ve discovered
the fountain of youth.

when i say – “my dear, you will never grow old.”
i mean it in the figurative sense.
because i’m trying to be poetic and shit.
(and btw, i’ll add “and shit” because i’m trying
to sharpen this cheddar – the cheese, that is.)

to clarify, when i say what i wrote that i’ve said,
i don’t mean that i could look at you all night and day.
or even spend time with you endlessly,
without needing a break from time to time.
nor am i implying that there won’t be times when you bore the
h-e-double-hockey-stick (*ahem* HELL) out of me.
because who knows? you just might.

but listen.

because what i am really trying to say.
what i really mean by all of this.
is that i am so completely thrilled and altogether terrified
by the fact that
i will never run out of things to learn about you.

and how do i know that, you wonder?
how do i know that the moment won’t arrive someday, when
we look at each other with disappointing familiarity
and wonder – “good lord, what have we done?”

well, the way i see it:
one, we don’t spend every minute together (and thank god for that).
two, we were already many, many minutes old when we first met.
and three, there’s an infinite number of things we are still discovering about ourselves, and an infinite number of ways in which we are still changing, growing, evolving.

now i’m no mathematician.
but when i add and subtract the relevant sums, i find
there simply aren’t enough minutes in this feeble, finite lifetime
to cover it all.

an eternity could pass, and i could never learn all the wonderful things there are about you. the moments – both memorable and minuscule – that make you who you are.

but i am here now, and you are here now,
and my appetite for you is insatiable,
paling only in comparison to
the infinity of you.

so as the years roll by, we will continue to age.
but you, my dear, will never grow old.

like a fine scotch

over these long years,
your memory has earned its age
in my sherry cask of a mind.

occasionally, will i decant
from its precious supply.
savor such sweet fragrance,
growing ever deeper
and more complex, in time.

Insta-photo: #calamari

Some divine small plates at Chalkboard in Healdsburg, just north of Santa Rosa. #calamari with golden potatoes and shishito peppers on a sizzling skillet. A trio of bruschetta (highlight: grilled peaches!) and #porkbelly biscuits. And a delightful summer #squash tart. All enjoyed on an empty back patio which felt like a friend's backyard. ️

Some divine small plates at Chalkboard in Healdsburg, just north of Santa Rosa. #calamari with golden potatoes and shishito peppers on a sizzling skillet. A trio of bruschetta (highlight: grilled peaches!) and #porkbelly biscuits. And a delightful summer #squash tart. All enjoyed on an empty back patio which felt like a friend’s backyard. ️

The Emperor’s Summer Palace

I spent the summer of 2009 traveling around China teaching English and SAT prep.  It was a wild experience, and I learned a lot about myself during the trip.  This graphic spent about three years as the background on my computer, and it was taken at the Emperor’s Summer Palace in Beijing, China.

summer-palace

reflections

three years once passed,
during which time
i averted my gaze
from any reflection of myself.

every mirror,
every window,
every lens,
every surface which bounced light
in that recognizable way.

…and there are many more such surfaces
than most might surmise.

but i had done so deliberately,
because i had grown abhorrent
and, indeed, ashamed of
a countenance that i could not change.

i pitied others
who had no choice
but to look upon my face.
they couldn’t know
how i could tell
when they averted their eyes.
in truth, i hated that i appreciated it.

call it immature, and i won’t protest.
i was already far too old –
this was supposed to be a teenage problem.
and even though conventional wisdom
told me to disregard appearances,
it was.. an ineffable, inconsolable plight.

i don’t quite know what changed, eventually.
what slight of mind made things click.

but i started by looking into my own eyes.
eyes that, as long as i held my gaze,
so too, did they.
those were the eyes that
had seen everything i had seen,
and would continue to do so,
as long as i lived.

perhaps strangely, in that,
i found peace.
not quite a solution, but peace.