When my mother suggested I buy you
a hope chest one Christmas, I had to laugh
at such an antiquated idea,
the image of you filling a cedar
box with enough household linens and bone
china for our new lives together. So
instead I watched your beautiful hands pack
your things and head off for an MFA.
That was the year you gave me your poems
collected in a manuscript. I still
have it—twelve-point Garamond on yellowed
paper—tucked in the bottom drawer of a
cabinet, your words, even now, as raw
as your inevitable leave-taking.