An Apology for Missing Your Party

I really appreciate the invitation
Somewhere between the corners of your eyes and
The edge of your moving lips
Rich curves drawn up and in
Forming straight lines from a zigzag pout
Centered where a solicitous X marks the spot
I was sorely tempted
So I said I would go
Though I knew two and a half steps down the walkway
That I had lied to your face

You told me a time, which I did not note
And location which I pretended to understand
(For the sake of good form)
Sketched a map on a notepad indicative of no place
(Other than the secret place where I’d like to take you, if such a place ever existed)

Late that night you stood on your stoop
Orange butane lighter clutched in a silent protest
Almond eyes dark scanning the sidewalk for stragglers
The last of the last of the late night revelers
And you wondered

But if you’d stayed on the walkway a little bit longer
two and a half steps, and two and three-quarter and three steps on
You’d have seen feet of clay dissolving to dust
Looked back to see legs turning to salt
Arms blowing away like fine grains of sand
As a wicked breeze carried
The setting sun like fire to the breast of the somnolent city

You’d know then: I had to be home
It takes time to pack one’s self back together
An intricate puzzle with no flat edges
The pictures keep changing
It takes all night
All night, every night

You stood on your stoop smoking alone
Together, we wondered
In separate distant corners


One Response to “An Apology for Missing Your Party”

  1. Sibel Catana Says:

    This is… It reminded me of someone very dear and it brought back the nostalgia that I felt when we parted ways.
    Thank you for this!


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