TIGHTLY BOTTLED

July [17] 2008

(Poem)

bottled

Last week her upper lip twitched

when I called ‘today’

our termination day.


Now she watches her

final leap of faith

stalled inside the starting gate,

smells it in the crowd noise and gun powder.


The loud clock

like her long deceased father

pesters her into remembering–

(she has something to divulge)

and knows time is running towards her.


We have met like this for three years

and in twenty minutes we would end.


My quick smile touches

her feet to the carpet,

signaling a safe zone between us:

our kind of shop talk.


Underneath a sweater

she unrolls a gift for me.

My own logo, vastly enlarged,

is stitched precisely in the pattern I once designed,

but on beautiful blue cotton,

impeccably crafted

by articulate and self-guiding hands.

So lovely I’m speechless and embarrassed.


The bottlecap has opened enough

for a short blast of self screeching

pressure release, bubbles, but no spillover–

(I will miss her)

we both feel the gratitude.

1979

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