The grass is golden-green just past the perimeter of my deck, my thoughts circling, circling,
within, reminding me of the shadows of birds between rooftops in Lisboa, nine years distant,

tiny black bodies and a murmuration (like a maelstrom, I wrote, then, in that poem), the wild
and dangerous energy of a city, of a people, of a moment in time suffusing their physical forms
with something else, something other, something I feel, even now, those terracotta rooftops
(that almost took/accepted my life) so far removed from the gabled particle board painted-
black, above where I sit


The death of a cat.  A Cookie (a Captain Cookie, if we’re being precise, named by sons
when I’d wanted to name him something mythological, something powerful, something potent,
but children have a way of knowing beyond seeing and you, my boy, were affection and adoration
and inquiry at the edges of blankets, at bed time, entreating an option to enter, and

sleeping against my belly through the night.  I held you on top of that belly as the drugs carried you
away, like the way I sat by my father’s bed, he in his coma sleep, and held his hand

as I read him the latest Nicholas Sparks he’d started before his unplanned sabbatical from the conscious
realms.  I didn’t know if he’d ever come back to that body, that room, this life; I knew, I chose
that you would not, to your mist-grey body, to my side, to this house.  You are buried
a dozen feet, lengthwise, below where I sit


Her phone is silent.  On silent.  And mine is silent in her absence.  The future I had envisioned is
silent, sleeps against my belly like a stone in my intestines and a hollowness in the depths of my
spirit.  I see a path through the dark and looming wood of a forest that is dissipating, coming
apart, even as I walk, its edges growing indistinct and undefined, until vegetation and clarity
close and direction fades to a half-remembered voice of lost intuition.  And where I sit


there are no replies, no read receipts; things lost in the past give no response in the present
or any indication that they are, that I am, seen.  Or remembered.  The battery on my phone is
diminished to ten percent—and dying.  So little time.  So brief a transit, this walk through a life
to whatever places remain beyond, on the other side—of a deck, of a body, an enclosure to hold
the fragile buoyancy of a life.  Of hope. Any hope.  I think on you.  I think on what is lost and
losing tangibility.  I think on what is left—on a screen, on a deck, inside a tentative place where I sit