I've had them orbit out before I reached
first base. Stare at me after the orchid-
pinning, the way someone new
to the neighborhood can't tell one quark
from another. Or money's the matter,
not the rolled quarters with double mint marks,
but presidents undizzied in somber piles. Let them
hat dance at night, and I the bright
light in the cup handle. Never the short walk
between wickets (truth bends in the presence
of love, its heat, its well of gravity). Or I faux pas
with stories of women who came full circle and left
with my Calphalon, saffron box, rolling pin. At every age,
there's competition: white dwarves, suits
with sailors' gaits, the snap of a playing card
in spokes. I'm ready for rounded vowels whispered
through the thin grille. The resignation
of the croquet ball, the moon sinking
into the Pacific. The way the nautilus seals off
the last room and moves along the curve.


.Originally published in Green Mountains Review