My poem "Real" has made it into the genial Cave Scribbles, a journal that explores the human condition through words. Read the whole thing here. The link is also in the "Good Reading" page to the left.
I was inspired to write "Real" as a response to the vertiginous vacuum left after my boyfriend would visit me at college during Spring Break. As I've mentioned in another post, this was my first love, and I was madly and deeply attached to him. We went to college 3,000 miles apart, and our Spring Break schedules were skewed: his was the week before mine. Since I was the poorer of the two and couldn't fathom another plane ticket, he came to visit me, staying in the dorm common rooms or the bed-and-breakfast, witnessing me and my friends as we went to classes, sometimes took midterms, and prepared for our Spring Break. It was unreal to have him there, that tangible piece of my heart, bringing all his California goodness with him. He fit in surprisingly well, considering that I slept in all-female dorms throughout college, but his presence was somehow on a different plane. He and my college never seemed to be occupying the same space at one time.
The sensation increased when he left and I turned to a week of no classes but plenty of studying. (There wasn't anything else to do, even if I hadn't been a complete nerd.) The entire campus was suddenly imbued with his presence. I thought I could hug him in the hallway, or get him a soda in the dining hall, but he just wasn't there anymore. I began to doubt that he had been anything other than a figment of my imagination. Hence the poem.
I don't think of this darling boy very often any more, but when I do, I get the same sensation that I made him up, a sensation backed up by failed Google searches. Somehow he's managed to remain anonymous in this era of information access. Very strange, indeed.
"Real" doesn't appear in Dusk Before Dawn (although many fine poems do!): Cave Scribbles is the only place you'll get to read it. Like my first boyfriend, it could easily become an evanescent experience, lost to the sands of time. Enjoy!