• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 12
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“To be or not to be”

After Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Act III, Scene I

With my voluminous, espresso tresses blowing in the wind
I scurried up the hill
To whence fraternal twins
Alaknanda and Bhagirathi
Merged in Devprayag, India
And a confluence of breaths fused into a rusted, antediluvian, timeless key
Dangling from your changelings’ fingers… on lease… from Star Trek
Or donated by Salvador Dali from the spidery elephant in his painting
Begging me to hold on
Hold on
Hold on
To the key
It was my last chance
To be.

“Or not,”
I whispered, as
The red and the blue waters spiraled into a whirlpool
The key dangling clueless
No roads could be seen
No sustenance or wine soothed me
Nor love was close by
I was alone with you, in you, of you, by you
Except for Shakespeare who came
Cycling down the hill embracing a flying carpet
Shrieking madly with his shrew chasing behind, “To be or not to be.”
“To be or not to be.”


“To be or not to be”

As I struggled with my response
Daytime shrugged and shook its head in displeasure
While night lights grudgingly came on
The dismal ancestral warnings seemed to be maids and butlers in waiting
Watching me, eyes agape, jaws even more
As I hesitated to pull the key from you
But then a phoenix nudged me on
As finally my aching fears reduced to ash
And your fingers collapsed
Your hands closed
And you slid into comforting sleep
As I finally came to be.