Dear Future,

clearer than I have in years, it seems 
I heard your voice speaking its narrative 
close to my ear. How quietly and steadily
it built. How it put one foot 
                                                          in front
of the other in sand, on stone. In mud
and dark and afternoon light. Nights
lit with blue 
                          shadows on snow, the sounds
of metal grinding on metal as trains 
traced loops of flickering voltage through 
the city. I thought 
                                       I could know you, those years 
when I pressed against your length like paper 
seeking an imprint of something other 
than itself. And I did, 
                                             I do: though you 
are always a few steps ahead, signalling for me
to follow. But I don't know how you've come 
to a place where you say 
                                                      you've learned to live 
with what gives you pain—what seizes 
tissue or nerve or flesh without warning, 
sharp as a spike or sustained 
                                                                like a note
trussed to the next by a line that looks
like a longbow. Monkey bridges span
the gaps between 
                                        banks of rivers. Cables
of suspension bridges are built to sway 
in high wind to keep them from breaking. 
I cross from one 
                                     end to the other, 
trying not to look into the gorge; 
trying to keep my eye on you.

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