A woman walks into the room.
    Its heat, the bloom of too much sunlight,
    the silent ticking of buds
    on limpid stems risen from vased water.
    History has given her this dress, this walk,
    the city in which she is one of many breaths.

    You do not know why she is unhappy.
    You only tell her story, would have
    brought her comfort if you could,
    every treasure to that quiet corner.

    It is true the woman is thankful.
    The room, the window, the silence
    painted on the walls. The dinner
    she ignores until it ripens
    beside its single spoon and fork.

    But she does not listen, will not answer,
    gazes out the window as if to find
    a single thing you did not place there.  
    A way outside these pages left to her.

    The woman is not real.  With one word
    you make her dance or disappear.  
    Already you forget the timbre of her hair,
    what her sadness was, and why
    each morning the same
    lightless hope still clouds your eyes.

17 October 2001   20:03 hours
salt { } how we live