the thing about _____ is that we are stories

1. four dollars of cherries from sweet tree
plus mint limeade and two
spinach empenadas

2. a forkful of coconut cake
before the styrofoam blows away

3. gaston likes fashion
kaya says
in her poofed skirt and dress-shirt
while prepping kale salad
which is a good reminder
i take her lead and zip up the knee hi boots
and climb into a dress
(and let it be known
while skirts i do on the daily
dresses are a twice or three times a year
kind of thing)

4. backyard flowercollecting in aformentioned
boots and dress
breeze moves down the channel of sidewalk between houses
carries star jasmine in clouds of scent

5. the thing about memorials
or life in general
is that we are stories
and in the coming together
we get to relive
ourselves/each other
and that by seeing each others faces, speaking the shared memory aloud
there is a validation that those moments and we ourselves
actually exist
that the magic
did indeed happen
we become real through each other

6. victor and i
take plastic spoons to the triple layer
dulce de leche
we get through this

7. first the orphan song
and then
on a table on the balcony overlooking the sunlit street
shot glasses and clove cigarettes
plus three photos
so one might have a drink or a smoke
like sitting down with you at a cafe in barcelona
this is where i leave the backyard bouquet
(tag attached reads: safe journeys/welcome home/we miss you)
this is where we sit
one by one to write you last words
(things we forgot to tell you
things we remember
things we want to send along with you)
in a blank book that will be cremated with you
it isn’t until i sit down at the table myself
do i realize
the power
of this gesture
the ability of words
to travel across bridges that us and those passing on
slateblue tablecloth soaking up cheek-rolling tears

8. chimichurri sauce
some people put it on steak while
i opt for walnut bread

9. nina simone on the boombox
while i dishwash
compost dump
and stovescrub
as if this co-op is an ashram
tonight this work brings me closer
tonight sweeping is nearly the same as
bringing my forehead to the ground