November 2, 2023


                           -for Laura Paul Watson

The way light mutates
into glory
over my friend’s shoulder—
we stop to face each other after our walk—
the sun’s raucous afternoon
cascading into night’s solemn basket.

The neighbor’s beech tree
has laid her gold crown on the pavement.

My sweater, thrown over the back of the chair.

I’m not afraid
to be the last standing figure
in a stand of figures—
to touch the foreheads, the hands
of those I’ve loved
as they drift to their own ground—
I’m not afraid to be last.

I read a book once about how
when death comes
the glow is glorious, blinding.
Fifty years ago
I made love to a man
who loved someone else—
I loved him anyway.
As brilliant as that.

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A Journal of International Poetry
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