when the missing begins
On the Center Street downhill past the nursery, you find yourself
near weeping. Two days later, with weeds in your fingers and the stain
of wet April soil under your nails, again. The bright sting of sunshine
on a Chelsea rooftop and the bulb of a nascent blackberry bush makes
you think how close summer is, and then your heart breaks in yet another
piece. You notice both the sharpness and the haze of your attention, the way
a man's cologne keeps clinging but the taste of wine feels strangely dull.
You don't know what to reach for, exactly - the present or the past - and this
is when the missing begins, as your hand extends toward a wilting bouquet,
the leaves crumbling at your touch, but the petals so soft. So soft.