tonight, it's longing that fills me

Day 30: "Sweet"
Mocha coconut frapp from
Mugby Junction, waiting on my desk last Friday (the day before my birthday) -
sweet in two ways.
A cold front's blowing in; the fragrant air
rustles as if with the approach of rain
but the sky's clear and when I go out to call
the cat I see in the pool's deep end the lights

of a jet. They look sharp enough to slice
a diver's legs. Michael joins me for a moment, offers
a sip of his Lillet, while the cat writhes indolently
on a stone still warm with afternoon. How clearly

I see her, my mother, twenty years ago,
as she sorted through my summer clothes, deciding
which of my batiste slips should be mended,
which used for dust cloths. I sat on the bed

and watched her toss them into two soft piles,
the air so dense with light I'd have moved,
had I moved, slowly as a bell rung in heavy oil.
Last night Michael placed a bowl of apricots

on the windowsill and kissed the insides of my elbows.
Love swelled like vertigo inside me; shown the word
in print I'd have thought it foreign, nonsense,
an odd name. But tonight, it's longing

that fills me: I sense the season's end as I would
the bass line of a pavane played from a great distance.
Michael calls my name, suggests a drive. And so 
we head down River Road in my old convertible.

He pops in Miles Davis in the tape player--"Sid's Retreat,"
"Green Dolphin Street," "Round Midnight." Music
and speed fuse and for a moment I'm no longer
in the car but behind it, the only skier on the water.

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