not shadow but
reflection

february rain from
tanguy’s sky until the streets
are all dull grey mirrors

if i keep my distance
i could be anyone

if i get in my car and drive
i could call it escape

could call it running away
which is sometimes an act of
cowardice and sometimes
an act of survival

and i sit in this room of
empty chairs instead
with my thoughts
and my bitter resentments

i believe in gorky at the age of 43

in rothko at the age of 66
but not in my father

not at any age and not in any
of the bars i spent my childhood in

i remember the threats
and all of the dire predictions

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