April 16, 2011

Judith Tate O’Brien

SECOND WIFE

I keep drawing the first
one from the cemetery
into the house
and pose her
perfect as a mannequin
at the kitchen table
where, chin resting
on a long-fingered hand,
she surveys
the bran muffins
and finds them crumbly.
I imagine her coming
to their bed
smooth-bodied.
I arrive bone tired,
half a century
etched in my flesh.
She gave him
babies. I, a notebook
filled with poems.

from Rattle #22, Winter 2004