Language Barrier

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I can fly along the coastlines
of language and learn to speak
enough Spanish Mandarin and Swahili
to make strangers laugh

I can soar on the feathers of words
boastful and humble and decorated
as a war veteran never having been to war
except for having been in love,

I am often so sure of what to say
what was said, what should be said
what will be said: I cannot speak to you.
I love you too much.

Words, although they dip and turn
with such grace, are inadequate ambassadors
over the chasm that has opened and dropped
between us, swallowing every word
we could ever say,
even “Forgiveness.”

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