Treasure Island

Joshua Bantum

(May 18th,1989 / Paradise, CA)

If You Were A Letter, You'd Be This One


I woke up knowing what I wrote next
Would be beautiful
Also I knew that it would be for you.

I prepared each syllable in my head
While lying down
I built a puzzle with grammar
Took it apart
And pieced it back together.

Quicker I got at it
Understanding the beauty
In which you helped build,
I needed to feel that beauty once more
In order to replicate it here for you.

After I was satisfied with my emotions
I ran for my typewriter
Uncasing the machine, I pulled it out,
And with impatience
I began to write.

After I’d finished,
I read out loud my clever ode to beauty
And to you,
I read it a hundred times
And a hundred times more,
There was a quality hidden within its innards
I didn’t mean for,
So a hundred times again I read the piece.
And finally I realized what escaped me.

I realized I had seen this poem before
So next I ran to my bookshelf and pulled out
Rumi, Cohen, Bryon, Neruda, Yeats, Rilke, Amichai
All of those who spoke of Love so well.

I read for hours
Hours and more, and I found my poem
Eventually
In every book I could riffle through.

I threw that poem away,
And wrote this one instead
I feel that you’d appreciate this much more.
For you’re already beautiful, and are wise to that fact
Nothing more can I unveil,
It’d be like building a candle of wax
And while lighting its supple flame
I run below the sun
Holding up my ode
And expecting him to be impressed,

I don’t expect this from anything
So why should I from you?

Submitted: Monday, September 30, 2013
Edited: Tuesday, October 01, 2013

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