I did not know how
To say goodbye to all of them
At once. A funeral, a break-up, more deaths,
More disappearances. Two murders.
All in one year. I was twenty-two.
That summer, I lay on the lawn at home,
And counted all the people I had loved
Who were not here.
And then I tried to think of new people
As if that would make it better.
It didn’t, so I tried to work as if that
Was as important as all I’d lost
But it wasn’t.
And then I left the country and spent
Some time in New York with my runaway friends
And that was nice
Until one found another girl
And another found drugs
And then I’d lost them too.
I ended up spending my last week in New York
With two women I’d never met before.
They were very kind but I was sick of
Always ending up with people I didn’t know
And standing on another balcony with a cigarette
And a stranger’s wine glass
Wondering what it would be like to
Have friends who didn’t run away
Not realizing then that I had
Just become one.