Dear Essie ?
The spinning laundry
resembles a vaudevillian’s umbrella,
one that catches pancake, spotlight tears,
from the trusty laws of physics.
I never bother to separate the darks
which makes my whites humanly dim.
The suds have saved the wrinkled thoughts
I wore that day,
from the ash-washed Lycra fibers, bound
by the intruder who shrink-wrapped me with
his eroding weight,
stamped leftover prints from his own set-in
stains onto and through my form-fitting fabric.
The only evidence
of that heavy handling is in this ashy lint.
These frayed stitches are my skittish nerves
after that day’s dark etching on my December.
I watched the cops as they dusted for prints. They left
a fine snow flurry
in the crevices of my tired parquet floors.
Essie, you are new and have not yet touched
shadow made by simply being. If I could wrap
your trusting form in tomorrow’s patchwork blanket,
and tumble you
dry with answers—maybe you won’t ever need
to host detective Sedowski and his team of dusters
in your pre-war,
garden duplex, in the land of cause
and effect, where assailants pose as plumbers.
The unfinished colors, Essie,
are waiting for me to drain and dry as much
as I am waiting; waiting-on-watch as I watch you grow.