the rush: a lengthy ode to my brother adam

for years i didn't understand.

i wiped my tears on the skin of the back of my hand.

i bent over journals.

and could only ask why

you could somehow wear wings

at those stupid public school

football games.


you stood high in the stands

you could out drum the band.


i'd sit just 10 feet below you

with mom and the girls.  

but my toes would keep beat with the wind

that whirled.

through the radio speakers wild and clear

transmitting waves

of your passion i'd pay just to hear.


and i've always had eyes in the back of my head

for the things i knew that i'd die to have missed.

and the way you swayed up there,

war paint on your face

was merely the



every little fiber

of your existence

somehow gnawing at me

to stomp fear


with you, like you.

i’ve always cried to.

and that’s what you do.

you don’t let us sit in mud.

your colors run rampant through our minds

til we know that we CAN TOO, let go, be a PART.

of the rush that you’d found that breeds hope

cradles art.



for years i've tried to sketch

with charcoal or paint

the depth in your eyes

they're soft heavy

like rain

sometimes they tilt at the end like

the bow of a sinking


sometimes they're bright like fire

when you've found someone to defend

sometimes they're glazed

and i can literally taste the haze

of all you behold

finding ground, taking shape

into fresh-cut epiphanies

you’ll disclose into the air

and then we’re taken by trains

to lands we wouldn’t have dared.

or we stand in the river

quieted by the sound.

enamored like it’s from mars, but nodding sure of the jewels that you’ve found.

because EVERY time, your eyes,

they're lenses

like telescopes peeling back and away

the mediocre, 2D, paperflat theories

we let pulse our days.


rumination. i learned that word today.

you remind me to follow my wonders to the edge and then off of the cliff.

illumination. your dance makes me want

to demolish the stiff

in my limbs. limes! lemonade stands!


tv tables! cash boxes! we wandered the land.

evolving alongside the warmth of your soul

made me better

wakes me up when my heart starts to grow dull.

it's nights when i'm on my speckled carpet floor.

and sometimes it hurts

but never too much

to just remember more


looking out the window green and gray

looking out the window

purple and white?


looking out the window what a pretty sight.


and if i squint really hard

i can feel that ugly grey cracking leather

of that lovely wretched



we were travelers together

and for that i may cry

but mostly i’ll just hang a preschool picture of you up by my window and remember

every morning that you’re still my friend til i die.


one day in the old house

you wrote that the air smelled like spring

that you’d go carve a stick

to be inside all it brings.

and that day at ballet

i stood at the barre

ignoring routine. pulled away.


cause the things that you say

don’t just make noise or fill space

they build towers, wave flags,

invite and compel us to race.

to live, to wake up, they shake us out of our seats.

they make the very moments we’re alive inside,

fall a level deeper into all there really is to see.


you love to read short stories right before bed.

you cry righteous angry defiance in dark temples red.

you glue pennies to the wall with carefree frustrated tender precision.

yea. galaxies lie behind those pennies.

i feel it every day on the way down to the kitchen.

you tell strangers they’re welcome and worthy and great

because their tiny quirks you actually see

in fact, you’re so captivated, you call them out and then, WE see.

you love girls being girly and then we finally believe its okay to be girly.

you read the whole old testament because you know

what is “worth it”.


i would watch through the glass

i would watch on the screen

i would undergo in the flesh

your spirit’s rare fiery strength

and i would not miss an ounce

of who you couldn't help but be


it’s like you can’t help it or hurt it

or leave it or choose it

you just breath in and out

a breath not your own

and we’re all graced by the miracle

wrapped up in your frame.

just like you walked into it the day you were born,

you walk with it, til the day you’re no more.



so yea, it’s not you that makes you great.

so chill out

give it up

you really can’t touch it.

just let him do what he does with you

and for the LOVE, don’t loathe it.


when i was 15 i saw you leading thousands up a mountain, banner in hand.

and now it’s nothing but clear to see that

there’s no date in time where you’ll finally lead the crowds with a band.

it’s the force of the who that you are that you can’t help but be

that leads thousands up mountains

with every breath that you breathe

with each day that passes with each stroke of your brush

it’s constant, its “chosen”. it’s holy.

the RUSH.