September has always had it in for me.
It lays for me.
When I was young,
The other girls came back to school more beautiful than the year before,
Wearing whatever was the newest style.
I disappeared down paths nobody knew,
Unable to explain myself to anybody,
Unable to explain myself to myself.
September is a bastard,
Neither summer nor yet autumn.
My last drink was in September,
And I want one every year.
The usual dull ache of loneliness
Grows teeth in September
And I can't bear it.
When I have found love,
It has nearly always been in October or November, in the crisp, good heart of fall;
Sometimes in the spring,
But never in high summer.
Never in September.
The ninth month would kill me if it could--
Nine the number of endings.
Nine the number I never want to see again.
My favorite aunt died in September.
9 / 29 / 85
The last time I took a drink.
I go down by the graveyard
The way I did the day they laid her there,
When I was still young,
When I still couldn't shake the gorilla on my back.
I go down there, and I think,
If a devil came out of the ground at my feet,
And I knew she would hurt my heart bad, but make me feel better today,
Would I fall into her arms,
Kiss her on the mouth,
Let her take me down in the dry grass?
Damn right I would.
In a heartbeat I would.
A crow flies above my head,
The breeze stirs,
And I hear my aunt's big laugh--
The one I loved.
I feel her protection
From my own despair
And I think, devils be damned,
I'll make it through to another October somehow,
Just the way I always have
For twenty-five years and counting.