The Window


A Buddha moon bellies upon the clouds
And with the staccato echo of heels on concrete
I hurry to my window, for it was the sound
of when once you came home
In that time when I knew love by your name.
The street below, patterned in the circles of street lamps
With glistening puddles from the afternoon rain
Speaks of emptiness except for one figure
Walking slowly, face down, hands shoved into raincoat pockets
Frantically I lift the stubborn window and call, “Paulette!”

She pauses, marvelously captured in light and shadow
And lifts her eyes to my face and smiles
It is not you. It never is. But she smiles as if knowing
My thoughts and torments. She smiles and shrugs
And walks on but with paces telling that she is like me
And has nowhere to go except into yesterday
When all the wonders were born that now
Slowly die within us, for nothing is as cold as sorrow.
And I retreat into myself and pen the false idols of words
As if syllables were serums and hyphens were hope

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