Love Letter

 

 

 

 

 

 

Michael     where are you

They found your car

On the edge of a cliff

Above the ocean

Near Daly City

And your brown leather wallet

On the front seat

But no one found you

 

I think of you often

Even after seven years

You’re legally dead now

You know

 

Once years ago

When we were kids

The sole of your right moccasin

Came loose and flip-flapped

All the way down Michigan Avenue

And the rest of us thought it was funny

To step on it if we could

You in your holey jeans

And plaid wool shirt

And then long after that time

You owned a three-story house in San Francisco

That I cleaned for you when we’d visit

Because you gave up your bed

So Steve and I could sleep together

And I’d hear the foghorn

Blowing from the bay

All night long

 

Michael

I had a dream about you

Soon after you disappeared

You were young again

You wore a powder blue jacket

With gray flannel pants

Clothes you’d never wear

When you were alive

But I saw your beautiful eyes

And you smiled at me

With nothing to hide

As you sat on the stump of a redwood tree

In the middle of Muir Woods

And there were people around you

I didn’t recognize

When I woke up

I was missing you

But understood this was a dream

That connected our two worlds

And you came to tell me

You are alive and well

In yours

*Written 1980, from Poets are the bravest, pub.date: 2001

Amiga de mi Corazon (1991)

Title inspired by a poem, Pal of my Heart, author unknown

given to me in the late 1970s

by Jacquelyn Fowler

 

 

 

 

“Oh Wendy

No need for fake flowers

Do hope you haven’t searched for them

I want no more

Death does not need things

It stands along”

—From a letter written by Jackie, August 1991

I say to Jackie

Tell me what I should bring you

From Santa Fe

She answers flowers

Those big paper flowers

In purple and turquoise

And the red of my old Mexican serape

So I find paper flowers

In purple and turquoise

And the red of her old Mexican serape

I find them in pink too

And I find them in yellow

Bright as field mustard

Blooming in February

On the hills of San Clemente

And I carry them home

To her

In a brown shopping bag

With Artisanos

Printed in blue on its side

 

Put on your concha belt

I say to her in my dream

Pull on your suede boots

We’ll go to Chichicastenango now

And buy an olla for your flowers

Or we could fly to Peru

And climb the high snow peaks

The ice peaks

Where spaceships land behind midnight

In light from quartz crystals

That reflect a trillion stars

That reflect our years

God will listen to us there

 

She and I know each other

Across a thousand generations

Of Seagulls

Our sons have become men

Our words turn the ocean’s breath

Into poems

While a tin angel

Rusting in the night air by her window

Sings a te deum 

 

Amiga de mi corazón

Amiga de mi corazón

I have no more words

I have no song

But here are a few ordinary

Paper flowers

I carried home in a shopping bag

Tell Death to look the other way

Look the other way     Death

When I give them

To you

 

*From Poets are the bravest, pub.date: 2001