Two goodbyes and an old poem

When SY 2014-2015 ended, I said goodbye to Junior High.
Before this new school year could even begin, I find myself having to say goodbye to David Hall as well.
In an fb post that I saw some nights ago, a dear friend wrote, “Oh how do we fit our lives in boxes?” And I was reminded of this poem that I wrote many years ago.

It’s almost magical how a cardboard box and some packing tape can hold even voluminous chapters of our lives. And it’s even more amazing how much weight our fist-sized hearts can carry, especially at a time like this.

I spent many happy years in David Hall. And the last two years were especially memorable because of Junior High School.
Saying goodbye to those two is like breaking up with a great love, twice.

The memories will live on. Not just through the photos and souvenirs, but also through the many lives that had walked David Hall.
I remember in a very special way GS ’05 and GS ’06 who were my PEP students and counselees, 6-Luna (and 6LJ) 2005-2006, 6-Jacinto and Lopez Jaena, 7-De Brito and Regis 2009-2010, 7-Kostka (and 7PRX) 2010-2011, 7-Bellarmine (and 7BnBrCm) 2012-2013, 8GKPR 2013-2014, 8PRRoX 2014-2015, and my Grade 5, Grade 6, Grade 7, Grade 8, and Junior High families.

Hearts are full as David Hall is emptied.


Moving Out

Two years and a half
are packed in a box
that stands by the door
and waits for the movers
to pick it up.

Your letters sit
at the bottom,
in old shoeboxes
worn at the edges,
with tattered lids
I painted with
moon phases.

Some records lie
on top of them–
the ones we sang to
on drunken nights,
off-key, and those
we rarely played.
In a paper bag
are a few of yours
which I meant
to return but kept.

Beside the records
are copies of poems
that I wrote and
books that I love
but you never read.

Pressed in between
the wrinkled pages
are the red roses
that I once found
on the bed and
hung by the shelf
until you told me
to put them away.

The pictures you took
are on top of this heap,
framed in wood and leather
and wrapped in
yesterday’s paper.

There was almost
no room for our
small-eared bear
whose eyes fell off
in one of our rough
and tumble plays,
but I squeezed it in.

When the box had taken
the last of the brown fur
I had buried my face in
on the many nights
you were away,
I threw in your keys
and the plastic ring,
and closed the lid
on everything.


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