hours have passed once I come to
from a midday caffeine crash
It’s not that I dislike this professor,
it’s that my mind wanders to other places,
far away states, which might as well be other countries
I miss him, I do
even now my thoughts take me back
to memories which I’m unsure if they even occurred.
Have I been sitting in this building for eight hours? maybe I’m suffocating myself with this mask.
Do you remember wearing a mask?
I hope you have no idea what I’m talking about.
I can see right outside, through the floor-to-ceiling windows, yet I’m longing for whatever is out there.
Maybe there’s something I’m missing, a detail I can’t recognize from here.
Sometimes my heart pounds when we’re five minutes till class ends. Anticipation? Anxiety?
Sure, for what though?
It’s now time to leave,
my mind moves faster than my feet and I’m on the bridge,
I’m close to the bridge.
It’s the hour before sunset
and I think I stopped walking.
I’m standing here, gazing up at the high sun in the high sky,
the movement of people blurs into my periphery,
the sound of cars a slight humming in my eardrum.
Am I here or am I there?
Did I ever really leave Santa Cruz?
Am I still there, walking with him up 41st Avenue,
where I stopped to take a picture of a bird of paradise plant because we don’t have those where
I’m from and
oh we both love plants so much
you didn’t even complain. That’s what I love about you.
I’m in that condo your friends rich aunt owns and
oh it’s so cold when I wake up but I’m happy because you’re
sound asleep downstairs and the birds are chirping and I can’t
feel my toes but it doesn’t matter.
There’s a bird of paradise right out the front door and even though it’s dying it’s still the most
beautiful plant I’ve ever seen because
we don’t have those where I’m from.
I’m standing on the bridge,
in front of the gym. The high sun in the high sky is tired
so it’s coming down from a long day of work,
like all of us. It’s trying to tell me something
I can’t hear over the roar of rush hour traffic.
I chase after it,
it’s begging me to listen.
It’s begging to tell me that
in this final hour between
Day and Night,
something, anything could happen
Sometimes Ethan writes silly little poems to cope with this silly little world. He’s graduating from Towson University May 2022