If she loves you

I hope she loves you well—

well enough to clean out the attic

you use as a heart

and dust off the mirror

you use as a mind.

(Remind me: What was

the last original

thing you said?)

I hope she can bring you

warmth when you need it

(and not freeze from the

cold of your back turned to her

in a January night's argument).

May she fill you with a love so true

your empty soul won't rattle

with the hollowness I heard

when, always, in answer to

my silly "I love you"

you would say "Me too" while

avoiding The Words themselves.

Like a kid with fingers crossed

behind his back, you fell through

on all your promises while feeling fine.

I hope she'll better than I did;

I doubt it.

---

first published in Cosmopolitan, 1986

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