His smile was a Tom waits song

Wrinkles and grey hair

Wry curmudgeon

Who still stayed up late

Not wanting to miss

A chance to complain

Or to touch her thigh

Sneaker and


And scarf

Mr. Rogers cool

with a curse

And tequila

On his breath

If it was a bad night

Most weren’t

Maybe that’s why he never slept

To make sure

The nights stayed

Under his control

He was an argument

You’d never win

a heart you couldn’t


Always sliding away

Of the ice of

His words


I guess I’m supposed to be embarrassed

Everyone else seems to be

For me

I don’t go to law school

So I missed the instruction


Over forty

divorced existence

In public

Is a crime

Only whispered about

And only slightly


To manslaughter

Which I understand

I’m also meant to



Wished-for revenge

Through my teeth

Like the glass of

Malbec I had to

Buy myself

You just haven’t

Found him yet

They pat and


And cringe

ever so slightly

Under concerned


And above

relieved shoulders

I guess I’m supposed

To be sad

That BBC and flannel

Was my real trauma

That checking an

Unclaimed box

At hospital admission

Was my real crisis

That an empty box

In the back of my


Was worse

Than a backyard of bones

I guess I’m not