Posts Tagged ‘missing’

One Missing You

in the chamber of the heart
lighting a golden candle
offering you a chair

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Once again I’m weeping in the produce.
This time it’s the cauliflower that does it,
remembering how you and I were the only ones
who loved it. I’m thinking now of curried
cauliflower soup and how I no longer make it.
Thinking of all those nights we squeezed the lemon
into the bowls, made a yogurt swirl on top.
And next thing I know, I’m crying in the cracker aisle
because I’m not buying saltine crackers.
I hate saltine crackers. But you loved them.
You loved them and, oh, sweet boy,
I still love you and I want to put the damn box
in the cart, as if I could bring them home to you.
I don’t mind it, this ache, I don’t mind them,
these tears. Of course, it hurts to miss you.
Is it any wonder I shop at ten o’clock at night,
these empty aisles, these tears spilling down my face
as I walk past the cans of black bean soup,
the flats of fresh blackberries, so ripe, so sweet.

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I don’t think of all the lines from letters
I will never learn by heart,
those letters that you never wrote
about those days you didn’t live—
those mornings you didn’t wake to snow,
those friends you didn’t bring back home,
those tangy foods served in countries
where you will never go.
Is it strange to miss what never was?
I wouldn’t know.
I’m not thinking of them now,
all those letters that you never wrote.

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Tonight it’s his willowy body I miss,
the way it fit so easily into my arms,
the way he’d find me on the couch
and slip in beside me and loan me
for a time the full weight of his loneliness.
I miss how sometimes we’d say nothing
and let the quiet crests of our breath
be the only thing that need be said.
I miss how sometimes we’d talk for hours,
our thoughts unspooling like ink-dark yarn.
I miss nuzzling my face in his hair.
I miss being with him everywhere—
in the kitchen, in the car, in the yard,
on a plane, in town, on the pond,
in the store, by his desk. But most of all,
tonight, I miss him in my arms,
here in my too empty arms,
this place where so many years I held him,
this place where the memory of his beauty
still leans full weight against my chest.

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One Attempt

like trying to contain the sky
in the word blue—
saying I miss you

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May 4, 2022

It wasn’t that anything special happened today.
No holiday. No giant rainbow. No astonishment
of bloom. Though in years past we would have said,
May the Fourth be with you.
It wasn’t that I made an extraordinary meal,
though you did love the thin-sliced roasted potatoes
I made tonight, and they did turn out good,
slightly bubbled and browned.
It wasn’t that there was a bobcat on the porch.
And the morels aren’t out just yet.
And Mother’s Day is not until this weekend.
But I missed you. I missed you not because it was
the first May 4 since you were gone, I missed you
simply because you are gone. Sometimes,
getting through any ordinary day
is like trying to play Scrabble alone.
It’s like singing a lullaby to an empty bed.
It’s like not making your lunch.
It’s like not worrying how you’re doing.
It’s like lighting a candle and letting it burn to the end.

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Missing My Father

When you miss him, look inside.
            —Deb Stevens, private correspondence

Today when I miss my father,
I hear him in my voice when I say,
You’ll go broke saving money.
I feel his tenderness in the way
I hold my own daughter’s hand.
His laugh blooms inside my laugh
when I giggle hee hee hee.
Here he is, ever inside me.
Returning home from his death,
I feel transformed,
or is it I feel more me—
the me he helped to shape
with his life, the me
he is fashioning with his death,
the me I’m still learning how to be.

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scent of sweet clover—

wishing I could send it to you

send you, too,

this woman

alone in a field


by sweet clover,

her head tipping back

in ecstasy

where the cup your hand

could be.

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One Thanksgiving




for those not around

the table, setting

a place in the heart

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empty space

at the dinner table—

a flower without its petals

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