Saturday, June 15, 2019



Nightly I write you letters

but morning is always a cancelled gray envelope


I've been wanting to tell you

how things are since you have gone:

the cherry trees still looks into your window

and offers its arms full of small birds

of your last Spring.

I've packed your luggage —

that worn leather suitcase with the labels of epochs

and sent it on freedom rides

to Mississippi jails.

Your clothes closet, once gay

as a carnival of bears

with your checkered shirts and poet's neckties

holds the odor of dead flowers

and more sinister than shadows

motes of dust in faded sunbeams

swing suspended from bare wire hangers.

Your rough jackets have gone

with their bearings —

they have given me their last embraces

to link arms with new companions

and your shoes are out walking again

on new picket lines.

But the grief of your old eyeglasses

that you patched with Scotch tape

is more than I can bear.

Lying in the lamplight before an open book

they watch me from a void

of vacant lenses

as I go from room to room on perilous journeys

groping with my fingers to construct your face,

seeking the answer of your lips

upon the sundered air

the way it was the last time I kissed you

under the wings of the Angel

of Death.


Olga Cabral
The Evaporated Man
Olivant, 1968

Olga was a very early friend to Longhouse
— we miss her.