“Every Action done in Company, ought to be with Some Sign of Respect, to those that are Present.” G. Washington.
There was a great plaza, speckled with a small crowd. There was a long aisle, flanked by seated strangers. There was a man in a suit. There was a woman wearing white rags. Were there flowers? There must have been. There was a Bible, or two, or a church perhaps. There were witnesses, or there were none. There was a fist held high. There were fires, large and small. A candle. A crying out. There were promises made, promises made, promises made, and a heart as clear as a bell heard the hollow echo.
He wiped away tears.
This was just what he’d wished for.
She braced herself, stiff.
tender as velveted paws,
So many ripe, falling,
the ground slippery with stones,
the sweet scent of rot.
Leaves gnarled with bugbites,
rimmed at the edges with gold,
crisp cascade to earth.
The small old tree bent
black and grey against the snow.
Brittle, the twigs snapped.
Neighbors arrive home,
eat dinner, fire up Netflix,
computers and phones.
Bandwidth slows, shrinks, stutters, stalls;
waves crashing amid beachballs.
thunder that began
like boulders, roars, & crumbles
to gravel curses
heat waves ripple off
the street — black, gray, white, and gold —
my brain wavering.
crawling, numb pressure,
tickling in the throat, the chest.
when all else fails, rum.
Crack the egg. Pour.
A piece of shell falls in, too.
She smiles at the yolk.