Mid Life
by Michael Zack

    At some point,
    close to our equator,
    we begin to die,
    before our faces swell and line,
    and our bodies tilt and bulge,
    before even the snow becomes gray.

    We buzz and bump
    summers’ yellow porch lights
    less. Life, which has asked of us everything,
    then asks more.
    Turgid intricate days
    digress to swatches of sepia nostalgia.

    We listen to our breathing
    of which we know nothing
    to learn how to feel,
    about which we know less.
    We no longer insist
    on realigning our numerous
    and vexing disjoints.

    Others know.
    Our daughters’ hug is firmer.
    Our sons pause to help.

    So ask me again what you said didn’t matter.
    Shut off the lights, be still, and find the windows.
    And if you want to know about love,
    go to the ocean,
    watch the tides,
    don’t think about the moon.

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