It’s been two years, one month, three weeks,
Since I sat on the edge of her bed
reading “Dover Beach” aloud
for ears pressed firmly
to the final page of life.
Patches of strength
curling their corners
like bandaids over wetted skin.
And I thought I could.
Make crepes that smiled from the pan
and press her Irish linen
without the steam of tears
and tuck it out of sight.
We matched like new pairs of socks
in my underwear drawer
or widows holding hands at Sunday Mass.
I’m sure she knew I smoked
and never said a word.
But turned faux pas like broken lips
of china cups around to face the wall.