What is the half-life of a needle and thimble?
My mother entered the kitchen with short, frosted hair
and arms laden with pine twigs.
More than once he died,
the inside light behind him spitting up red.
Already the maps dissolve
like my mother going home,
but showing up at the wrong house.
Perhaps I should have waited, sent a photo
of Seated Nude Holding a Flower,
that Miró painting you always loved,
when you loved me, then loved me not,
They rose almost in the dark,
went barefoot through the wet grass
to gather windfalls before the birds arrived;
A gut-check cringe away from hope—a taste
laid wide against the tongue that I can’t swallow—
and you’ve already flown the paths I follow.
His was a study
of the beautiful flash, the elusive, staccato
its knowledge of good and evil
coiled on the seat between us.
Alone on the beach under an empty sky, it all comes clear.
You promised me vastness—
even before your irrevocable exit.