My husband has just left for work, and I’m already knotted
by the window, watching him like a dog. I should paw the glass.
I’ve got problems, man. Let’s get that out of the way.
Just look at me sitting here in this fallow
slant of morning light, like I’m stuck in a Hopper painting.
I’ve got a Harley rumbling on high idle in my chest and a mind
that catches and kinks like cheap cassette tape. This is the third
time it’s come back — the panic I thought I’d beaten
with the help of my shrink and a rainbow of Rite Aid generics.
And I feel guilty, ungrateful, un-Oprah-like, swaddled
in this voluptuous excess of useless sensation. If I could, I’d pull
the energy from my body and just do something with it —
jump-start cars, anything. But I can’t even leave the house.
And to make matters worse it’s springtime in Northern California,
and the trees are bursting with buds. Also, I’m wearing chenille.
I’m wasting my life, twisted up on a faux-leather
sofa in the middle of a weekday morning, and as I gaze down
at the bright spill of cds across the carpet, all I want
is to be in Morocco with the Rolling Stones,
and I want it to be 1967. All tiny blue tiles and lsd.
I want to walk slowly through the arched doorways
and courtyards wearing a sheer caftan over my naked body.
I waft through whitewashed rooms with a joint drooping
from the ruby-encrusted fingers of one hand and a snifter
of cognac in the other. I want my long, straight hair teased
into a perfect dome, my eyes rimmed in kohl, a talisman
against evil dangling between my high breasts, and I want to find
Keith lounging in the sun, his face still young and unlined,
his silk shirt wilted open. I kneel beside him, lift the grass
to his lips, the jewel-like coal glowing in the early-
evening North African light, a pale blue deepening
into an indigo minaret of sky. I exhale with the ripple
of the fountain. Keith sighs and closes his eyes,
and I say, “That’s ok, baby. Everything’s cool.”