Bank Statements & Pizza Boxes

I have piles of old papers
covered with poems written to
you like this one from my August
2015 electric bill, $46.71.

I’ve written forests for the day we
meet. Grocery receipts are not
immune. And old thank you notes
from the Women’s League even now

profess love for you. I’ll try to
explain by handing you the
receipt from the electrician. And the
torn pizza box lid from Rico’s Pizzeria.

And I’ll show you the I-O-U from
the dog groomer who forgot to
shampoo Willy Bean last October
giving me a free Mocha Latte at Starbucks.

You’ll see.

Rainbow Trout

Up the street, trout.
Up the street, a lake was always
stocked through the summer.

I used to fillet the rainbows and add
butter to the pan. We lived well
before droughts dried the lakes low.

Trout up the street in a grocery
stocked with small bills for change.
We trusted the lake.

What we would do for all the bass
he tossed back. Only one rainbow
today, a curiosity in the sky.

When He Wakes

When my husband wakes,
he has rogue curls bent
from the night folding and
creasing them into origami cranes.

Each morning, I can’t help myself.
As birds circle his head, I try to
tame them by running my hands
through his flocks though I know
they won’t settle until he showers.

His curls are long now, stumbling
over themselves in soft repeating
collisions as he moves in bed.
Come morning, Great Herons flying!

The Job Interview/Meeting the Dog

I sat waiting in the foyer.
Standing up, peering in was
a little dog in a sweatshirt
that read College or Bust!

A maid passed me and
opened the beveled glass
door. The dog sat outside
until invited in.

When the maid closed the
door, the dog sat inside
watching her. The maid
looked down and asked,

“Outside?” The dog was
ecstatic, and ran outside
on a mission. The maid
hovered. The little dog
peered through the door.

Maid: Do you want in?
Dog: Only to go back out.
Maid: I’m paid to be game.
Dog: You do a fine job of it.

Me: You two taking this
on the road?
Maid: Only if he doesn’t
get into college.

Me: Where’s he applied?
Maid: Harvard and Yale.
Me: What’s his backup?
Maid (sighing): Princeton.