My husband has gone,
Silence of a closed door
Grates my ears and hair
Like a swinging chapel bell.
No one else can hear the beckoning
Inside the walls of this empty house,
Our room still smelling
Of the earth in his shoes.
I am useless in my petticoats,
Raccoon-eyed and ready
To throw myself against
The soft, beating sweat lodge
Of last summer’s lover.
I long to sink the brown
Of my wanderlust toes
Into the sand of some other world.
In the next room a child cries,
She is otherworldly but she is mine,
Open ‘o’ of her lips
calling into the clouds of my white noise
like the slow pull of winter’s frustration.
I will go to her, her hair smelling of fruit
And tiny hands clutching the collars
Of invisible ghosts that haunt our hallways.
Late afternoon will fade into me,
Looking like tossed leaves and the hungry,
Coffee spilled across my chest
Like a brown-stained sundress.
I will not notice,
I will be writing, each fingertip
Pressed to the typewriter like a tiny pearl,
Cigarette dangling from my lips,
I’ll languish beneath the silver cloud tufts
They say will kill me, though it doesn’t.
Time is useless to me, though everyone
Seems hard-pressed to utilize the clock-ticks.
I do not need them, I do not need anything.
For between the damaged goods
Of my chest cavity,
I gather my bitter pills at the doctors will,
Arthritic-ticks of my poking ribs man-handling
The mechanism of an invisible death clock,
awaiting me to strum it with my fingers.
***This poem was written from a prompt at We Write Poems. The idea was to write in the view-point of Anne Sexton.