This I empty of you, box by box,
until what remains echoes your
small complaints with faintness
of tissue wrap. To me you were
the ping made when a goblet’s
edge is firmly tapped. Gone is
the clarity of your advice, able
to quench doubt with a wrist tilt
of a last sip. You solved it all. If
only the world has listened. But
it never does. These days seem
orphaned of time, calendar lost.
I cling to dusty trinkets as if they
could conjure your return, erect
small vignettes hoping to catch
a glimpse of your ghost passing.
There is no remedy for loss. Fill
the day with what you will, in the
end it lacks, lacks by the gallon.
(Painting: Sun in an Empty Room, Edward Hopper, 1963)