when last we met,
when was it 2012?
you built me up.
have i told you that?
walking around Budapest
in the early hours,
sharing stories,
sharing the blissful madness
of brotherhood.
you rebuilt my foundation,
it had cracked here and there,
did i tell you this?
we are older now;
balding with wrinkles from living,
from knowing.
i should’ve come after treatment.
when i was told i would live,
i should have come.
before my back was stooped,
before i was frightened,
before the happiness of others
was more important than my own.
when did you teach me to speak?
when did i start walking
with shoulders squared,
and my eyes up,
fixed intently ahead?
when did you explain
that the pain in others
was not mine to heal?
when did you teach me
that my sensitivity
was a blessing, but also a target
for the weak and the hurting?
my shoulders are still squared,
brother.
my eyes are still burning, straight-ahead and direct,
brother.
you would be so proud;
with a word
i can turn away
those seeking my sensitivity
to heal them;
those wanting me to hold the weight
of their pain.
how aged will we be
when we meet again?
will we look younger?
will our wrinkles reveal more
about the lessons we’ve learned?
will they tell of living
and how we lived?
will mine tell you of the peace
you helped bring me,
the calm you brought an old man
with squared shoulders
and confidence-filled eyes fixed intently ahead?