Sunday, June 7, 2009

Poem: Daughter

Fortune: You will receive a compliment 
from a stranger on Friday

Stranger, was that you
ordering tacos to go
at the long glass counter
steamed with beans and beef,
your daughter in tow,
her hair a weedy lot
betraying her mother gone,
a father with no heart to comb?
There’ll be time enough for chance
in ten or twelve years 
when you’re home alone,
Danny Gatton on the stereo,
a bill from her college
a landmine you found
in the mailbox, this black hole
you birthed—every drink
and dollar and man
falling ever in to her.
And you were lost yourself,
a blue star trailing a train of light,
only visible a moment
that night in the taqueria
as you turned—was it 
my jacket, my earrings?—
before she pulled you back,
you with a laugh for her,
her hair such a godly mess,
her face so bright
she could burn you alive.

(appeared in Northwest Review, 2008)

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