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



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.



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



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.



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

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