Biting bits of skin from my chapped lips
looking for a place to park, I stop
behind the gift shop near the graveyard where
we buried you on a day like this.
This is another season you wont miss—
you, who have become a part of me
I tell (the clerk what Mary wants)
to no one now.
And in a lot behind a superette
I choose a tree, then stop and sniff,
consult my list, and go,
with nothing on it left to get,
home to wrap her present, cut the wrapping
paper short, tape scraps on gaps,
come finally to the bow and call for help.
she puts her finger on the knot
and speaks of you—a girl we used to know,
who knew the people that we used to be.
No present waits for them beneath this tree.
They've changed, like you—almost beyond belief.
Theres nothing left of you for us to see
But look how little others see of us
who see each other every day
now and then.
Mary plugs the lights in
then directs me from afar,
saying what Im too close to see
As I adjust the star.