Aubade for a Perennial


When your sorrow lights are well across the Ohio border, cruising
smooth, 77 South, shimmering with energy and alive, it is time to dissect
where you slept—where you held me for five more minutes
into your blue cotton chest, your friends’ cigarettes, I sobbed your goodbye.
Like a mercy kill for memory, the fitted sheet is first to go. Unhinged,
it bursts and buckles and looks just how you like it: unmade,

more cozy that way, and so to forget who you were, I make it.
Double detergent, hot out of the dryer, feels like no hug of yours,
which is good, in the way acupuncture is heaven and brave.
I pluck the dead leaves from my succulent while I relearn to breathe.
If you knew how I freeze, bleed, root down and grow again,
you’d yank and euthanize me like a comatose weed.