There’s the platter of meats laid out for our guests;
wine, deviled-egg sandwiches; and the open field,
scrubby and littered, under the fire escape
where the kids go to smoke; there’s the broken down
Toppys furniture truck in that field, and the old men
walking up Mississippi smelling like cigars and fifty years
of dumb hope. There’s Bruce in his blue leisure suit, waving,
the horizon no longer far away: Mother toiling
with the family room— walker in a corner,
a rack of coats that go back sixty years.
For once, the mucked repetitions of home
don’t loom like no-end streets, nor does the riff
of the beating heart, ahem, ahem.
Our guests sit at small plastic tables eating the food
we’ve laid out for them, their conversation,
the dog barking next door I’ve set my life against.
Grandma’s in the bathroom rolling up her sleeves –
the rag in her hand, her husband in an urn
no longer yelling for her.
Look—there’s me, there’s me.