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.
About the AuthorAlex Miller is a literary reviewer, arts journalist, fiction writer and poet. He is a staff writer and literary reviewer for Art*Throb Magazine in Salem, MA. His essays have also appeared in The Curator. His poetry has appeared in Thorn, Create Here, and has been set to music by the composer Justin Johns. He works as an Associate Professor of the Humanities at Gordon College in Wenham, MA, and a teacher of high school English and Rhetoric. You can find more of his writing at thirdcardinal.wordpress.com, and follow him on Twitter at @miller_jr and @thirdcardinal.