Sometimes, I wonder if the cigarettes
I've stamped out over the years
have brought me bad luck,
like the girl with the beach blonde hair
told me once, outside of the Dizzy Lizard
as we exchanged life details over drags
down little strips of memory,
as if reaching for that fleeting checkered flag
meant something, as if the one who made it first

So what if we drew lines in our memories,
points of before and after, lies
we believe in to distinguish ourselves between
that was then, and this is now.  So what
if the echo of the voices of children
off the trees lining your
elementary school playground find themselves
permeating conversations tripping on
cracks in the sidewalk and cracked
lips, glossed over
she said We all have to die sometimes,
let's dine on it while we can.

She visits me still in dreams,
with San Francisco clouds dwelling
we look out over the bay,
the water chops and sways
beneath the vision of a bridge.
What's on the other side I want to know,
but her toe slowly crushes the embers
and with the smoke,
she dissipates into the clouds.

I still wonder about thoughtlessness
and meaning, like Meursault
in the blazing beach sands of Algeria
and feel there are no winds
to carry my worries away.
I toe lines in the sand when I can
to mark something semisolid to return to
when I fear there is nothing,
and the echoes have all disappeared. 

Kevin M Kilroy is kind of tall and puts too much sugar in his coffee. He's graduated a couple of times now, which is kind of cool but also kind of rubbish.  He's published, just trust him on that.  He plays the drums, too, because no one told him guitarists get all the chicks and now it's too late.  He is from New Jersey, and does not care what you think about that.

“A Moment” for me, was about a simple feeling of connection amidst helplessness. I don't know that girl; in reality, I'm not certain that she actually existed. But the poem was written at the tail end of graduate school about a feeling at the tail end of undergraduate school, a feeling that has washed over and drifted back again and again. It is memory, be it real or imagined, because our narrative is what we make it, and of it. For me, she and that moment were, and are, as real as the sentiment itself.



Copyright 2009