After November

"I can't go on without you!"
I bellow just below the level of perception
Behind my stone gray scarf
In a downtown sidewalk crowd,
So tentatively my boots do not part the snow,
Surprised my breath does not fog
This icy afternoon.
I can't go on without your footprints
Beside mine on our sugar white beach,
Without your guitar beneath the willow,
Your tie-dyed robe over hazelnut coffee,
In the absence
Of your necklaces of sea shells and starling feathers,
Your slow bronze fingers
Washing my hair
In the French antique claw-footed tub.
"I can't go on without you!"
I screech to the oblivious bundles,
But faces zig-zag by.
What is left?
I try to buy croissants, thread for sewing, pears
With what I think of as my hands
Remembering the one goosefleshy thing
A ghost consistently forgets.

Rebecca Lu Kiernan

If you've any comments on this poem, Rebecca Lu Kiernan would be pleased to hear from you.