I’m not a poet, but this is for my friend E, a poet who died recently.
And looking over this an hour or so later, it is a pretty terrible poem, but what the hell?
Two women writing
on opposite sides of the country.
We were on the news once.
No idea what channel
Occupying a building
with radicals who wanted free day care on demand.
We were their teenage babysitters.
We were there.
We saw the footage.
We talked on the phone for an hour afterwards.
“Can you believe it?”
It went on our college applications.
Not that we cared about college applications.
Later you dropped out
After only two years.
You went west and were a business manager for a small paper.
I went east and was a Latin teacher.
You wrote in your unique voice about the arts.
I wrote in my unique voice about the arts.
It was the way we dealt with
So odd that we pursued parallel careers.
Never reached our potential, though.
Later I searched for your poetry
But didn’t find it.
Maybe there’s a database at the university library.
Didn’t you date somebody in The Band?
Or was it a Rolling Stone?
Or was it just the guy at the blues concert in Chicago
When I dated the other guy at the blues concert in Chicago?
The word I liked best in your obituary was “joyous.”
survived by your mother and a cat.
I picture you surrounded by friends.
And I wish the obituary I found
Was just a fake obituary.