small bonsai cypress

girl on lap

She told me...

That one day, I would write her story. She half- feared that one day I would write ours.

I have never known anyone like her, nor loved, neither...

She once meant more to me than anyone. But the truth is, we never really knew how to be friends.

I wish her well, wherever she is.

Can we go see the seals
November, 1999

One clear November morning
Sitting in the windowseat of a cafe
I see her first in the half-reflection
Of the open window
With somber measured steps
Superimposed on a stack of napkins,
Cream and sugar.
I do not know whether she is
Generally more serious now
Than she was just over a year ago
When she walked into my life
A mere two blocks away.

She came around the corner
and asked me if we could go
To see the seals.
I told her "no" and felt a little smaller.
"Look what I got," she sat down
And showed me her pretty corduroys
"I traded away my nasty polyesters," she beamed
She leaned toward me and whispered, conspiratorially,
"In this crazy world, they are highly in demand."
She asked me to touch them
The faded colors of sage and lavender
"They are very nice."

She asked me if I was still
Mad at her
I shook my head.
She asked me if I loved her
I looked at her beautiful face
Tilted slightly toward me.
I tried to remember my Spanish
Looking down at the reflection of words
In a ripple in my black coffee
"I wish you had come this morning."

Rather breathe deeply of the afternoon
I tasted black ink in a pool
In the side of my mouth,
Spat. It was not gone.
But she was
Walking answerless through the streets.