The Art Of Disappearing

When they say Don't I know you?
say no.

When they invite you to the party
remember what parties are like
before answering.
Someone telling you in a loud voice
they once wrote a poem.
Greasy sausage balls on a paper plate.
Then reply.

If they say We should get together
say why?

It's not that you don't love them anymore.
You're trying to remember something
too important to forget.
Trees. The monastery bell at twilight.
Tell them you have a new project.
It will never be finished.

When someone recognizes you in a grocery store
nod briefly and become a cabbage.
When someone you haven't seen in ten years
appears at the door,
don't start singing him all your new songs.
You will never catch up.

Walk around feeling like a leaf.
Know you could tumble any second.
Then decide what to do with your time.

by Naomi Shihab Nye

Other poems of NYE (45)

Comments (4)

Beautiful poem full of tenderness. Touches the heart with its delicacy.
A beautiful poem about lost love and lost opportunities. Two sayings come to mind: He who hesitates is lost. You snooze, you lose. Finally, PH has chosen a poem worthy of being poem of the day.
Immensely regretful and sad, opportunities missed that will never reappear
The poem is really touching. It tells you the way love may waste one or two souls who cannot find love. You feel it.