Tara Way

I hope they don’t think:
“Will she come when I die…”
He wanted to call it separation
anxiety or some other clinical
reduction for my distinct behavior—

Eleven years of all the same
on the plush burgundy couch—
I could never penetrate
the steady pace of our session.

“He got a raise.” I tell the man
with the hat – he’s uncertain,
caught, patiently anticipates
his own caste commentary –
perhaps divorce is necessary.

Billy talked about Penny,
desire, and disruption
based on our vows –
“Tell me, doctor,
what do I say to him?”

A tilted crevice in his cheek
squanders the banks of code—

Tell him of the brick-
lined sandbox –
an instrumental childhood
kiss – revisit the age
of six and the moss
along the walk –
from his grandfather’s porch
the street – identical bricks—

“You need to find your foundation.”
Says the man in the hat –
But in this?
My typical/situational diversion
of wedded rows and now I ask:
“Tell me doctor:
How often do you hear this?
How am I really doing?”

A motion to continue,
pen at ease on a crisp yellow page—

Do I cause shudders
in my mother’s shoulders?

I hope so.

Yes, I want to be a bother.
In the way of a surprise spring
snowstorm back east and melt swift –
“Am I being melodramatic?”

Billy plays his business
well – trips overseas –
with his secretary, Penny
And swears solitude
in sultry Parisian corridors—

Melodramatic, yes. I know. I’m aware, yes.

Jealously rests unwell—
And anyway – I read more
when he’s gone –
catching up on Capote, Keats and Camus—
what I never gave myself a chance for.

That decade that I spent slipping,
into –
And –
No –
I didn’t have the time then
And cheating wasn’t a crime in that age.
Yes –
That’s what we told ourselves then – and now
Oh god knows now – I haven’t –
Worry wallops me –
And doctor? I lied.
I wasn’t six encased by bricks—

I was five, he was four –
It’s not memory or reality—
Why base it on what happened then?
Not foundation, it’s quite irrelevant.

And tell me, man with the hat…
“Why do you invest
in something so permanent?”


One Response to Tara Way

  1. Joseph says:

    It appears That this poem is trying to do something with bricks and foundation not so much in a concrete sense. The problem I m having is figuring out all of what is going on. The speaker seems to be looking at Billy and Penny for something but it’s not clear what. You have such a command of language in a rhythmic sense but all I am left with at the end of this poem is a void of confusion. You have placed me in the anxiety of the speaker but I don’t know where that is.

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