What Goes

My life is full of heartfelt cliches:
“That’s amazing, are you excited?”
“That’s amazing, are you nervous?”
“Such an opportunity. Good luck!”
“I love you. Goodbye.”
To all I smile, say yes,
And occasionally cry.

But the real answer to anything everyone says:
All that is either here or there,
And right now I can be neither.
Because what’s “there,”
I truly don’t know.
“Here” almost everything stays.
I go.

What else goes?
Three suitcases, in navy
With tags from Emirates Air
And a sticker from Russian Security

Not my favorites, but
What can be used the most.
I packed them aware
I would hate them in a year.

I do like a couple items though:
Dark skinny jeans that I wore nonstop last March in Peter
A tight party dress I’ll probably never wear,
Socks just knitted by my mother.

I’m taking more than clothes though.
For example, a toothbrush.
And mugs, magnets, mittens.
Hardcover book of poems. A bag with fringe. Bangles.
Raincoat, resilience, my ever-present rings.
Scarves, skirt (long for orthodox church)
Skill in speaking Russian.
Dictionary for when those skills fail.
A deck of cards. Documents. Denim. Differences.
Delicacy, because a new life is fragile.
An only rarely forced smile.
FaceTime for people “here,”
Facebook impressions of people “there,”
Faces in a photo album to bring my “here” to “there.”
Confusion. Boxes of contacts. Clarity and vision.
The knowledge that I’m making a life-changing decision.

I know I’m forgetting
Some necessary stuff.
But the funny thing about “necessary”
Is that you can replace and create stuff.
I’m bringing me.
I’ll strive for the courage to see
That I am enough.


2 thoughts on “What Goes

  1. Fantastic! I already miss you, in that I know Moldolva will change you in many ways-positive, exciting, a little scary- change in directions predicted and unforeseen- your future is boundless. Soak it all in. Love, Dad


  2. So great to hear from you today! I thought of you a lot yesterday, and wished I had said “good-bye” again, that is, after Saturday. Well, not really “good-bye” – just “until we meet again.” So great to meet again virtually this morning! And you are always enough Katrina. (: Some days will be hard and you’ll probably cry, but you did that here too, right. (: And I did it there too (well, not really there, but you know what I mean). And other days, you’ll be bursting with awe at what you see and hear, excitement in seeing yourself in the mix, and amazement as what you can do and have accomplished in your mere 18 years of life. If you need a shoulder to cry on, one that has been there, you’ve got my number. Love, Lee


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