Poem Beginning With a Line You Told Me to Save for Another Poem by Josiah Nelson

Poem title: Poem Beginning With a Line You Told Me to Save for Another Poem
Poet name: Josiah Nelson
Poem: What is alive is always a matter of time. 
For instance, stars. Pale light
before dusk. Certain feelings 
like melancholy, hope, or lust. A flash of sun 
through a slit in the blinds. Your shadow
on the wall, or a hug from behind. A breath 
through the song of your body. The long
autumn day we spent walking the sandy banks 
of Wanuskewin. The night we stayed out beneath a blanket
of stars, or the moment you perched your body
over mine and searched for something 
in my face. The possibility of fingers
on skin, or lips as lightning, or any other act
of grace. Knowing the precise shape of desire, either
like light through a pinprick or a candle
in a dark room during a storm. Wounds
slow to close or the belief that some gaps within you
will ever be filled. Waves at sunrise, or vapor
above the pot when we cooked Thanksgiving together. 
Ash, dust, and sparks flying since the beginning, 
flickering into flame on walls etched with images 
of animals, people, fire, or the pictures 
after pictures, meaning words 
also written in sand, stone, or the scroll 
of a mind. Things that tremor, like earth,
or legs, or your smile when you’re not sure. Your coy look
before you laugh, or your eyes going big 
when your turn to the moon. Inventions 
like borders, countries, or conflicts 
with ones you love. Dark nights of the soul. Any
epoch, planet, or human life, or
human life. Water, air, any one bit of matter. The
sun. Yet I’ve heard other things never end, only
echo, how certain numbers dissolve into themselves 
or reach their fingers toward the edges 
of infinity. What about galaxies, space, or 
time itself, or even the very structure 
of beginnings and ends. What about 
forever. I mean to ask: what about 
the shiver you still send up my spine. 
End of poem. 
Credits and bio: Copyright © Josiah Nelson
Josiah Nelson is an MFA in Writing student and sessional lecturer at the University of Saskatchewan. His work has appeared (or is forthcoming) in Existere, Queen’s Quarterly, Hunger Mountain Review, and the Rumpus. He placed third in Fractured Lit’s Monsters, Mystery, and Mayhem contest and has been nominated for Best of the Net. He lives in Saskatoon.