Now is the only time.
Right now I am creating a state of mind,
a joyful moment
to carry me into the next hour,
travel with me though the morning,
thread its way into the afternoon,
trickle down to tomorrow,
and spill over into next month, next year
to color all the days of my life.
I always fantasized that that joyful moment
that turns into a contented hour
and becomes an afternoon of delight
could only come if my hand were held,
my face caressed,
my yearnings satisfied
by a man—a mythic prince.
But my prince is not here right now.
He is not present in this Valentine moment of mine.
He is off smiling that charming, little-boy smile,
the one with the dimples and the heavy-lidded longing,
for someone else.
He is placing a perfect rose on her pillow,
or so I imagine.
I could as easily imagine
that he is asleep at this moment,
or lost in the shadow of a frown.
Perhaps his jaw is clenched in anger,
his lower lip quivering with grief.
Yes…he could be sharing a blissful moment
with the woman he loves.
But they could just as easily be sitting apart,
in a dark place edged with uncertainty.
Will our paths ever cross again?
Will we need or desire each other if that moment comes?
Silly questions that beg to be left unanswered.
I have only now,
only this Valentine moment of mine.
What shall I do with my moment on this red-letter day?
I will breathe in my solitary pain.
I will breathe in the pain of all those who find themselves alone this day.
I will breathe in the corroding poison of lost dreams—mine, theirs.
I will breathe out a measure of loving kindness,
That soft breath out will soothe me
and flow in endless ripples
to comfort all the solitary souls.
Could a moment in a lover’s embrace,
With its uncertainty, its impermanence,
ever produce such a melody,
such a true and clear harmony,
as the symphony of a thousand lonely hearts
connected by a single breath out?