I need a hug from you, from behind, as I’m standing at the kitchen window, washing dishes and looking at the one pink-flowering branch left on the peach tree. Just last week it was a bride, all rapture and petals. Today it’s a mess of green in which the bulbous beginnings of new fruit are hiding.

I need to be reminded of mortality, but not too harshly and with frequent breaks for frivolous distraction. Kiss me now, please. Then you can get back to your newspaper.

I need to get out more. So here I am at the cafe, sipping a Mexican mocha like a participating member of society. Only now I need for the expensive-looking couple at the next table to shut up. They are either on a first date or planning a business venture; it’s hard to tell. The woman is saying, with undiluted enthusiasm, “It’s about following this four-step process, and if you practice all four steps, you can be creating all the time.” I need to steer clear of undiluted enthusiasm.

The couple compliment each other so brightly and frequently that it is obvious they have not yet been intimate, although they want to be. When they cross and uncross their legs, they do it in perfect unison. I think about you at home and wonder if you have done the New York Times crossword puzzle without me. Do you miss my knobby knees bumping yours under the table? Suddenly I need to know.