new slice of sunshine

he surprised everyone
becoming animated suddenly
after hours of sitting
taking in the festivities
with an aloof disdain
but seeing the ghost of her walk in
seemingly unchanged after decades
threw him into an agitated joy
never thinking it through
realizing it had to be someone else
he set her in his sights
wanted to go to her
but stood paralyzed by indecision
what to say after dreaming this moment
there were too many words
all inadequate
he contented himself to watch
talking out loud with wild eyes
to anyone who stood near
telling tales of their love story
as he nostalgically recalled
details of her perfume, favorite sweater
he could still recite her favorite poem
though it never made sense to him
as he heard her laugh
memories collided with the present
causing such a burn in his chest
he wasn’t sure how he’d survive it again
she drifted through the room
so smoothly
he thought maybe she really was a ghost
and the moment they locked eyes
he was transported
to that day in the old house
in the bell room
amid the orchids
the incongruity
of the sunny day and the tears
the anger and the puffy clouds outside
how his mind had splintered
along with his heart
jolted back into the presence
by her smiling at him
he stood transfixed
she made her way to him
drawing nearer
he started to see differences
in her face and eyes
it wasn’t her after all
but as they began to talk
he saw a glimmer within this new girl
no longer a memory
but a new slice of sunshine
that pierced his heart
giving hope
that there was still a man
lurking beneath the shell
and this girl
wasn’t his past
but just maybe
he had been granted a chance
to start again

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