The lamp overhanging
my neighbor’s back door
shutters on, flickers
like language.
A stutter. Morse code.

The incandescence
then swallows itself,
clicks off as the foyer light
warms the evening.
A mistake – they
clipped the wrong switch.

I still take it as a hello,
a good evening,
a happy spring,
an “isn’t the weather fine?”
I need it to be.


Test (The Day This Lifts)

The days this lifts
we’ll flood the streets.
Will you get naked,
relish the air, lick the
filth of Manhattan Ave?
What a relief it will be,
what a relief.

The day this lifts
I’ll throw clothes in a bag – unthinking,
blaze down 95 – unblinking,
bang down the red diamond door and oh
What a reunion it will be,
what a reunion.

The day this lifts
we’ll shake the proverbial champagne and spray.
Will you take a sip for the occasion,
get drunk on talk and warm bodies,
fall asleep touching elbows?
What a night we will have,
what a night.

The day this lifts
I’ll let him go.
Or maybe I won’t.
Either way, my heart
will keep up the thaw
and eventually
What a Spring it will be,
what a Spring.

The day this lifts
will we be any different?
Will you still seek deep comfort?
Will I still conceal a dark heart?
Will our minds be wiped clean
like grime from windows in rain?
What a test it will be.
What a test it will have been.
What a test.


(photo by Jennifer Hart)