An air conditioner whirs
baritone in the bay window,
the couch where she sits
throbs in sunlight, songbird-
egg blue. Sweet
fermentation of peach cobbler
leaks in from the kitchen,
her voice says it’s been almost a year
and his death’s anniversary
is a wall at the barbed-wired edge
of time, a tall ragged pine on a cliff.
There isn’t any color there.
But today thick humidity, cobbler
melting fruit into butter and grain,
the strange hope I know
my ignorance of grief provides,
like a tinny big-band song that played
while her brother made some dinner.
It was a hot weeknight and the trumpet
vines were blooming. He flipped an egg.
Somewhere the engine marked for him
was starting up. A kid from church group
doing donuts in the parking lot, letting out
some steam, thinking of nothing in particular.