At night we drank
like we always have, by the river,
along the eastern bank of the Schuylkill,
which may mean hidden, and may be appropriate
now in the present, with gray architecture
At night we drank,
but not anything domestic, as you think
it’s all swill. The tide never
reversed although you said it will.
I looked at you for an instant,
(I would like to say it was infinite,
but I would be lying because it isn’t)
then into you
through your obsidian eyes,
which were even darker than your charcoal
complexion. And inside your body I still saw
You read me a poem.
You were speaking to cellular attackers.
The ones that are trying to destroy you.
You called it an inside job, but it’s not.
Agent Orange. Viet Nam.
I am dying.
At least that’s what you say now,
after a year of denial.
I will be employed by poetry (a bond)
to carry a poem, a man, up flights
of decaying wooden stairs.
I’ll try not to trip.