The Phantom Trail of Fireflies


Snow covers the early thaw – a winter flirting with leaving for good. Too quickly one lets a hibernating heart hope. Daffodil bulbs cracking too soon.

I am only asking that you refill the coffee if you take the last of it. When shelving the old mugs still warm from the dishwasher, I somehow think of you. Another life, perhaps. Or maybe it was the time I added cinnamon at the bean level and you said: way to fuck up a good cup of coffee!

Daffies, coffee, and the phantom trail of fireflies.

Lightning didn't make sense on the last day of February but it was not unwelcome. Saffron flashes turned night-snow from moony ice to soft cream. But no thunder – only the soft decrescendo of the train leaving town, westward.

I watched the storm in its entirety because the sparks of light offered a rubber band snap of sorts to the deadened underside of the wrists. Let's talk about depression, okay? And I'm going to skip the poetry of it because it takes a lot of effort to dress up the fact that I haven't taken a shower in over a week.

The kids visit me in my black room and ask ever-so-softly if they can get me anything. My husband morns me; what else can he do?

But B. texts from school to say that he saw a red-winged blackbird on the bridge between the freshman campus and the main building. Mom, I wanted to tell you because I knew it would make you happy.

And in a single instant, I was never happier.

The black tars eventually must give me up. Every day the impossible is gathered when, for others and for love itself, I try again.

maybe soon
for the sake of me
I will buy a bathing suit
so I can swim with my family
between the banks of spring and autumn
leaving behind the black cloak
of she who always was
too heavy for