Midnight Train to Georgia

by Nathalie Handal

My cousin the Army Captain
didn’t say much,
then one day he wrote to her:

Didn’t I adore you harder
than silence?

Didn’t you know
I kept trying to reach you

but kept appearing on the
other side of wherever I wasn’t?

Didn’t you know
I tore time into pieces

to understand how
I harmed you?

Kiss me one last time.

Who can really escape the heart
well enough not to leave a trace?

Kiss me one last time.

Didn’t you know
I was afraid to count the music

on your side of midnight,
to count the steps

that would never lead me
to where I could tell you, free me?