Tuesday, November 17, 2009

sestina: a good man

Wanting to separate the way they were from what they’d become
Thomas found himself sitting in a train station
drinking gin out the bottle
singing themes to movies that used to mean something
he always got too drunk on Mondays
and he always got too drunk on Tuesdays.

She left for Maine on a Tuesday
wondering what had become
of time. There weren’t enough days in the week, and Mondays
always felt like the bottom of a bottle
to her, heavy thoughts on nothings that were once somethings
and the lightness that came with being stationary. 

He liked to imagine that she had been stationed
in a rural city, imagine she got Tuesdays off;
thoughts like this gave him something
to want, something that wasn’t about becoming
a man alone, a man bottling
thoughts of a woman who left him to suffer Mondays alone.

Often he smoked too much on Mondays,
sat outside and told the milkman to save his bottles,
that no one drank milk anymore, rotted bones stationed
in a rotting house, waiting for Tuesday
to come, praying for Tuesday to become
Wednesday to become Thursday to become something 

not near, to become something
with a far off feel, but Mondays
always came too soon, and they always became
hazy days of gin soaked linen cloths and bottles
lined on windowsills, curtains ripped, Tuesday
looming like a hurricane, radio stations 

humming about the end of days, doctors stationing
themselves at the doors of weary men wishing something
would kill them soon, kill them before Tuesday
because they’d barely breathed through Monday
and there were no loved women to pry the bottles
from their tired hands. Thomas was becoming 

a coward, afraid of losing the ghost of her, of who she became
when she went to Maine and left him stationed
in an empty house, wishing for her to regret something.

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