Morning Diptych



I wake when the room is newly full of light

The basement window bars out Brooklyn

but the sun breaks in  easterly

& anoints you anyway

the morning draped like a bed sheet on your

unbroken body        I struggle to keep my body

still against yours      but you stiffen

towards me and begin to rise

your green eyes heavy with grief again


Close your eyes        Close your eyes   so I

can comfort you the only way I know

My body    slow    against yours

My thighs   a cradle

to rock you into day




The morning of the third day your mother

paints her bedroom walls

which are cracked with water damage

& stained by all the sallow years


Your father      the painter     & your mother

his muse   —  he worshipped her

in shades of nude   on canvases stretched

across the room

                                     The room itself

is a tired pink      & though she covers it first

with white            & then with buttery cream

the pink bleeds through   —  until the walls

are the shade of his skin

before  the cancer set in

                                                  We find her weeping

& clutching the brush      like something briefly sacred

What are you looking for?