One Year

All night
light the fires, squeeze the juices
from the coals.

A battered smile, a Belgium waffle forehead.
A reverend blowing prayers on a child
and I leave the church feeling worn.

It’s old. Harpooning at the water.
Smoke is a ghost
hiding in a suitcase, traveling
from room to room to room.

Silent as a pillow, soft as one too
the familiar hall, the black doorway

Cat jumps the wall.
Dagger shadows spin in headlights roaring.
I wipe down my legs,
feel for the towel. I’m alone.

A whole year
in six stanzas. I don’t know if I believe
but I hold coffee grounds
in my heart.

One more
for the lovers out there, one more
for those still hanging on.

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