my thousand words

so maybe i wouldn’t fall, not a thousand times.
maybe i would just trip, slip or slide just a little.
maybe i would sing out of tune your favourite song
or maybe mine, or jumble and mix the words around a little.

maybe i would bake a cake
and ice it with chocolate,
with a side of strawberries or mangoes
or whatever your mood wanted.
it could be vanilla icing or something else.
maybe we’d just scrap the cake
and bake cookies instead,
rolls of dough and chocolate chips.

maybe i would make you smile
by either shock or surprise,
a tap on your shoulder,
or a loud boo from the side.
or maybe simply by my predictability,
which would come as no surprise at all.
but still it would be something.
or maybe i would make a face
to see a smile on yours.

perhaps a smile through hours of silence,
or through the first words that break it.
maybe a smile that only comes after
a good thought-provoking argument.

and not just your smile,
i would settle for a chuckle
or even a smirk,
perhaps just a nod,
or even just a blink
would do just fine.
i’m not picky like that.

it’s not just about the smile that shows on your face,
or the teeth that you show, or the ones that you don’t,
it’s not about the shape that your cheeks take
or the way your eyes move when you smile.
it is, and yet it isn’t.
it’s about the process – the telepathic message which transfers
the smile in my mind to take shape through you.

it’s not about how wide it is, or how long it lasts.
though the wider, the better.
the longer, the better.
it’s about the state of your mind that you choose to express
through your smile.
it’s about the process of thought and change that takes place.
all the details in the background that i am not privy to.
it’s about the thousand things i want to know,
but never asked about
(mostly because i am a professional coward).

not to mention how your smile
is a gateway drug
to the sounds of your laughter.
which i should not get too much of,
as the withdrawal symptoms
kick in instantly.

but let’s not get all silly here,
i know that smiles aren’t a constant state,
that moods swing up and down, they fluctuate.
the amplitudes and frequencies change
like a sine or a cosine wave,
which if you look real close, or from afar,
happen to look like bridges between
frowns and, yes, smiles.

so i don’t mean at all
to romanticize the smiles and falls
in such a way that ignores
the pitfalls of our day to day.
it’s not so much your smile
as much as it is that you smile.
if it were just your smile
then a frozen or moving image would do,
but it doesn’t.
it doesn’t capture the life in the act
because there is life in your smiles.
so to be around you smiling
is simply a way of living.

on many days i will wonder about
you, because in my mind you are
in so many ways. so much so
that i may no longer have any understanding
of who you might be; of who you really are.
i want to break through that smile,
and feel through that frown.
i want to sit with that blink and
dine with your yawn.
i want every moment with you
to be as real as it can be.
i want every moment
to be as real as it can be.

these are not the thousand words
that your smile is worth.
no, i have not found nor written those yet.
these are the thoughts behind my smiles,
the thousand flashes in my mind
that when asked about
i can only describe as: nothing.

words are lazy creatures,
with many odd features,
they spill through your
fingers like sand.
you use to them express
and perhaps confess thoughts and feelings,
and yet find yourself making
quite a mess of them.
words are plenty abound
but never around when
you feel like you need them most.
some thoughts and feelings remain simply

i’ve let these words sit here for years on end
with no end in sight for where they’d end.
so they lie here dormant and still,
unseen by the light, unmoved by the wind.
and i don’t even have a thousand.

so here are just a few scattered words
(instead of the thousand)
that i won’t recite everyday,
because that is a promise, that honestly,
i wouldn’t be able to keep.

why i love you so.

smelling the hint of spring in a cool winter breeze and how it makes me feel alive.

the purple shade of your leaves as they leave to die.

sailor moon smoking a cigarette on front street, joined by a hundred other cosplay enthusiasts on a sunday afternoon.

humans being dragons that chinese new year’s eve.

a happy lesbian couple holding hands walking down the street. well, i don’t know if they were happy. maybe they’d just had a huge fight and were holding hands as a way to overcompensate and hide their anger. i don’t know, i only saw them passing from across the street. i didn’t have a chance to peek into their souls.

on a rainy ramadan day, a muslim man uses his jaanamaz (prayer rug) to shade himself from the wetness as he runs towards a bus. carrying in his hands the food he will use to break his fast.

all of this over time, but within a mile.

the feeling of living poetry.

toronto, this is why.