is what will not stop coming through the windows
all day coming through doors like children
taking turns playing taps on a leaky bugle not knowing
where the tune comes from keeping me
on the other side of the room by the fire writing
these lines about New Mexico about Robin
and Sally and Meredith how long ago
lying beneath Robin the high desert sand
in her fists a plastic syringe or a man
with blond hair or my shoulders as she came on top
crying and Sally strapping on her six-string to teach me
how to play California Dreamin’ saying don’t be afraid
to change chords before you think you’re ready the tracks
on her forearms shifting as she walked up and down
the bass strings or Meredith telling her stories over
beer-talk that blew up from the parking lot how she
drank a twelve-pack tried to beat the train and the night
I lifted her out of her wheelchair we did all we could
on the dance floor how they came to be part of a history a rosary
I need to say I don’t know why today it’s just the wind
will not stop coming through the windows.

On Drinking Coffee With A Stranger At Café Divine

Tonight over dinner, she will remember
this hour of badinage, and dust,
with a powdered memory, silences
that foam up to the surface
conversation. Thus, she will fill in
crevices, the way putty seals a crooked hole
gouged out by a thin nail
bent from the weight of an image
in too heavy a frame, before
moving on to other subjects: art,
war, global warming—reports of children
locked inside a house on fire
called life. Her husband
will jump up and ask if she needs more
water or coffee or some other
extinguisher. She will mumble something
about this afternoon, how the light lingered
on fingertips like yellow pollen, like froth
blossoms on the skin of a cappuccino,
how it met the open
lips, full on, without hesitation—
how she needed
nothing else.