William Taylor Jr.

So I Could Have Something Again

The other night I bought a copy 
of her old book of poetry.

I’m not sure why.

I’d been drinking a bit 
and thinking about things 
that have gone.

I’d long since gotten rid of the photographs
the texts, the underthings.

I guess I bought the book 
just so I could have something again.

Like I said, I’d been drinking.

I’m browsing through it now,
hearing her voice.

She’s not as good a writer 
as I remembered her to be 

and there’s some comfort in that.

But when she was on, she was on
which is more than you can say 
for most.

And even the not so good poems
are still uniquely hers, which is 
also more than you can say for most.

On the page she’s tough and mean,
all sex and trouble and above all else
a burning desire to live.

Her softness doesn’t come 
through much, or her humor.
But she was sometimes soft
and I’ve never known truer laughter.

But all of this was years ago.

I don’t think she writes poetry anymore.
You can’t find her on social media.

Just another ghost in a world 
lousy with ghosts.

I guess it’s good that I don’t have to see
who she’s flirting with, her dumbass kids 
or who she’s married to.

I thumb through it a while then give the book 
it’s rightful place on the shelf, wedged in 
between Keats and D.H. Lawrence;

all those tough sexy poems she wrote  
for everyone but me.

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