“Some of the Reasons” by Dana Yost

Some of the Reasons

By Dana Yost
 

I am still alive.

Some days, this surprises me,

like when I pass a mirror

and see full flesh, dark hair

and spectacles upon my nose.

That’s me, I might say,

as if it could be someone else.

That’s not the point.

This is: maybe there wouldn’t have been anyone

in that mirror.

I could have been under dirt,

mortician’s clean-up job not perfectly

resolving the gashes up my arms,

the lipstick of my mother’s kiss

to the forehead

long faded to something like a stain

on a filthy found-on-a-café-floor napkin.

But here I am.

I wave to myself,

and it waves back.

No trick mirror,

no time machine.

But science, faith, sunshine, time.

Wife, son.

The chance of stirring a heron

from the fringes of Bear Lake.

Pumpkin pie, melting ice cream.

Neighbor’s little white dog, yapping like just-married tin cans

tied to someone’s bumper flapping down the road.

Then silence: it’s licking my nose.

A brown-haired singer on a Sunday morning

with her acoustic guitar,

voice true and longing,

hymns

so spare

there is beauty

in the silence

between the notes.

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