Glass Poetry Press

Volume One Issue Two

Kathleen Boyle

O Nonni

Then the Pope was dying too and I thought of you all day. Such a holy man you said again and again after seeing him at Candlestick. In pictures he was shrunken as you were that afternoon I found you lying on your kitchen floor, clawing at nothing with toes and fingers, wailing. A few weeks later you were dying and I was in Egypt. Anytime nowShe's like a small alien my sister emailed. The day you died I wandered yellow streets of Coptic Cairo, stopped in every church to light candles. Each flame flared up then pulled back from its match. The saints stared past me through black eyes. Now I live in your house, go days without thinking of it or even you. Then some Wednesday I return from work to your smell of roses, hotcakes, girdles, palms from Palm Sundays past and all I want to hear is the voice that goes with this smell. There is nothing in particular I want to tell you, there was already this space between my lapsed life of men, drinks, books, planes, and yours of dentures in a fuzzy glass. Yesterday coming up the back stairs there it was again by your second stove, the one you'd use to fry fish on Fridays. And I would pray a hundred rosaries to sit once more with you at your kitchen table as you sip coffee, two hands on your daffodil mug.