Notes To Rachel

You gave me bunny slippers
for Easter, and a copy of Watership Down;
it earned you the benefit of a doubt.
I wonder how long before you are gone,
after you've vanished.

This morning the refridgerator
dumped cold on my bare feet;
I thought about the way
your back arched around my toes.

Estelle came today
with a shoebox of photographs
you had taken on our trip to Vermont;
you scribbled notes on the back
of every one.

When she was gone,
I read the words on each photo
over and over.

I walked to the mailbox
four times ahead of the mailman.
Mrs. Campos next door
thinks I'm going insane.
Maybe she's right.

This afternoon
I sat and watched the wallpaper peel
from the corner where the glue
never took; after a while
it looked like a time-lapse film
of rotting fruit.
I decided to get the TV fixed.

Estelle came by again-
this time with a girl
who looked a lot like you used to,
before those I-want lines
furrowed your forehead.
You named them all after me.

Estelle left and she stayed;
we drank Tanqueray with no ice
until you disappeared.
Afterwards, she slept naked
on the blue couch downstairs.

She was gone this morning,
left a note under your smiley magnet.
I didn't read it.
It wasn't from you.

I went to Delmar's for breakfast,
but negatives of you live there,
the leatherette booths mocked me.
I snuck out before my order was up;
I can't go back.

Going home,
I thought I saw your head
above a clutch of backpacks on sixth street;
but it turned out to be
just another blurred ghost.

Mrs. Campos watches me
walk up the drive;
I grin and wave like a lunatic-
as if I never saw the falling,
as if I don't know it will be years
before I feel the crash.

1 comment:

Eric 'Bubba' Alder said...

Those last two lines really slammed the door loudly! Wow!