WHOSE BONES ARE THESE?
At the dig box, I think of the oxygen tank,
its lift and buzz, a pump that sighed
like lungs hummed through lips. We want to
last. We want to hang on.
Before the hospital, you spent afternoons
with your feet up reading novels, your long
arms, golden watch, a cigarette, a lipstick case.
Evenings, you walked alone the wide, cold beach.
A kept woman my mother called you, and visiting
I would roll around the velvet benches,
lift up the pieces in your collections—
sand dollar fossils, fishing lures,
wooden decoys, books on birds.
Replicas of mastodon and mammoth bones
buried in a box of sand. We learn to discover