nicest thing anyone ever said to me honored you:
"your voice reminds me of that guy," he said, "what’s his name?"
there were lots of people heard me read, you were proud of me,
I didn’t stutter even once, I found the words down there,
brought them up, declared my love for you how many ways
I don’t remember, nor do movies say, A Place in the Sun
or Giant, or Cleopatra, the one that truly counts
as manna in this wilderness, where your eyes, my voice,
a body together with a body, my man’s, your woman’s . . .
how does it go? our friend Elizabeth in Kansas:
"I tell all my friends about you, Kee, I say go look
at the actress you resemble, and they don’t have to look"
at her death mask now, nor do I, you are more alive
than when you were twelve like the girl in National Velvet
who looked like you at ballet or playing piano,
your father at the race track, your mother with other men,
but nobody stopped you from becoming anyone you were
in a big city smalltown Spokane unlike Raintree County,
the shrew Martha asking Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
confessing, "I am, George," and he whom she married twice
walks the bridge between suites in Puerto Vallarta leaving
before you come home to improvise with chords of normal life
(23 March 2011)
copyright 2011 by Floyce Alexander