Tanya Grae

The Path of Non-Attachment
September 24, 2019 Grae Tanya

The Path of Non-Attachment
 
I was born in a cross-fire hurricane.
 —The Rolling Stones

 
At 4:54 AM
Andrew totaled my car, leveled the house
 
& destroyed nearly every piece of furniture.
The day before, I could see the spiral coming
 
on the news. Everyone said ride it out. Batten down.
Buy water & canned food, but the shelves were bare.
 
I bought wine & crackers & black cherry seltzer.
I glazed, predictions tightening, my head swimming
 
room to room. I didn’t tape or board the windows
or light Lucky Maria candles. I couldn’t think to pray.
 
I packed my mother’s Amelia Earhart suitcase
with photos & journals I couldn’t replace
 
& left Homestead, unclear what must be kept
or let go, the way we marry & give ourselves away.
 
If only each disaster announced itself, a siren
warning of the storm we won’t survive. Whose life
 
can be replaced like new? More to have, to hold
but years? I stumble on the surest things I know.
 
And standing at an airport carousel
in another city, I watch an unclaimed bag
 
pass again that someone somewhere
feels better lost than found.

Tanya Grae is the author of UNDOLL (YesYes Books 2019). Her poems and essays have appeared in American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, AGNI, Prairie Schooner, Post Road, and other journals. Her work has been selected for Best New Poets 2019, the Tennessee Williams Prize, and two Academy of American Poets Prizes. She lives in Tallahassee and is the current creative writing Edward H. and Marie C. Kingsbury Fellow at Florida State University where she is finishing her doctorate. Find out more at tanyagrae.com