Tuesday Poem


He (please don’t tell) is the one man in my life
(almost 70 now?) I’ve ever wanted to grab by the belt buckle
and ride so fast the bed would take off.
But I’d just sit there all those interminable nights
at the Center for the Arts, my thigh grazing his—
through high school, Lucy and I drove to Cambridge
in my mother’s car, hid a few houses from his,
and followed him to the clinic where he worked,
then to all his Saturday afternoon chores.
We’d haunt Café Algiers.
When Lucy died he called me.
When I met my husband, I called him.
I can tell he has come to New York.
I can feel him walking in New York,
I can feel him walking up my block
and stopping to buy water
and looking up my building
up the 40 floors up through my floor
up between my legs
up through my head

by Martha Rhodes
from Mother Quiet
Zoo Press, 2004