I.

they said it was painting the fence that did it.

the heat and the work and then maybe the rest, too.

 

it makes me think of Tom Sawyer.

I could never imagine that scene beyond a shallow depth.

sidewalk, boy, fence, and a backdrop of nothing

 

II.

your best friend’s wife stood up and told us

you came to her, you told her how angry you were. I believed her.

I still do. what a strange thing.

 

III.

one summer I found a translated copy of Franny & Zooey in the basement.

I never asked if it was yours, and I never read it, though I always wondered

what it would sound like

 

IV.

how funny that it all comes back to flight,

the controlled rise and fall

this time it was in August, this time in a plane.

all perfectly dramatic, like a mediocre Oscar contender

but it was real, and I was the last stop.

 

it's interesting what melts away.

just me and him and my words and his pace and a slow walk back towards life,

if I’m lucky and strike the balance right.

it always comes back, hardening like candle wax as it cools

the wick has moved though, sinking a little deeper.

 

V.

an experienced fresco painter knows how much surface can be painted in a day

the amount is the giornata. a day’s work.