Coming at you, Ray
Gone so long
but raised today in conversation--
Provincetown, MA (were you ever here?).
Still handsome (don’t worry)
silver blue-eyed, sinewy (not my idea of masculine? so what).
Today we could have been old friends
(our issues long ago resolved).
I could have said, “This is my old friend, Ray.
We sustained each other in the workplace,”
talked students, film, Capote,
friends against bureaucracy at the
South Bronx junior high, 149th and St. Ann’s,
a perp walk from the subway, etc.
Escapee from rural Norfolk
fugitive from insular Brooklyn
teachers with callings to new lives
and I lost you to the AIDS plague.
Now, so much later I see you
when I pass this house, hydrangeas
the colors of the sky out front
a Bedlington terrier, like George,
watching from the porch (too obvious? so what).
Many evolutions in my life.
People were pushed and fell away.
But you, you could have been here
and I could have said, “This is my old friend, Ray.
We cycled and camped through so many seasons. We toast
our longevity. We are still ……”
Damn, I hate this crepuscular life!
© Linda Umans