Dan Mummert The 2River View, 8.3 (Spring 2004)
Coffee Break in Geyserville

Too young to understand, a stream outside
his window tugs at rock life and lichen, picking
at bits of everything it rubs; it harnesses
a sheet of wind, spooling the gray
and wrap-warm kind of morning
until a glossy paralysis is at bay. I watch
the current’s flimsy grip,
the organization of ribbons caused
by a fallen stone. You can figure
size by the water’s tremor. After a while
change is apparent by the same sore gravity: the day
a friend died naturally and how hampered that was;
objects in his room like shiftless orphans
I took as my own—a hairbrush on his tallboy,
a glass of water, a few cigarettes—like lovers, even
unlikely ones, there are moments of return,
exchange, persistence. The way
we write about our mothers baking,
about growing into mothers, measuring
the ingredients of history, or the way we entertain
forgiveness, all these
surgeries and what they signify—in time
will yield some easy dissolve.

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