david graham

Survival Diptych

                                                                    1.   One year anniversary

                                                                    Nothing graspable.  Rather the sift of fine sand
                                                                    over all:  bedclothes, book jackets, mirrors.
                                                                    A slight grit in food, haze on the steps.
                                                                    I had thought my adversary would appear
                                                                    outright, wrestle me like angel and fool,
                                                                    but day after day I gaze dumbly
                                                                    at our windy black walnut sweeping and plunging
                                                                    yet going nowhere.  Just suffering in place.
                                                                    Turns out I can't wait and weep both,
                                                                    can't make diagnosis any sort of solution.

                                                                    2.   Contentment

                                                                    Not, as I had dreamed, the flush of wine
                                                                    or heat of bed.  No electric plunge
                                                                    of sled down icy hill.  Rather
                                                                    the sleeping breath of a walked dog
                                                                    curled now at my feet.  Merely the sound
                                                                    of my wife humming in the bathroom
                                                                    her pre-work arias.  A moment
                                                                    unaccountably crystalline, winter edging
                                                                    the panes, and even the fact of cancer
                                                                    just a fact this blazing day.