Thursday, January 5, 2017

How Could You Not?

She committed her audacity now thirteen
years, six months ago. What did she know
when she was dying? – at the edge of dead,
lying comatose in bed – too bewitched to say?

Now you pray in January for a mystic snow
to freeze the moment that she’d died: to numb
the heat she didn’t feel, then couldn't feel,
to clarifying cold. (Outside, July had fried.)

She did feel cold. Remember when she told
you to turn up the heat (diction elegantly neat):
"How could you not? It's freezing!" Appeasing
dying bodies isn't easy. “How could you not?”

she’d asked, with careful syntax, even now,
unmasked. In your dream's Sargasso Sea
last night three women's heads arose in front
of you. Only one appeared to notice you.

They didn't look like her, but they were she.
(After “were” not “her” but “she.”) But they’d
not come to lecture you grammatically, much
less to tease or pique. Death doesn’t speak.


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