Touch: The Journal of Healing



(The morning after)

    by Luke Evans

The morning after, the oven was on.

I woke to smoke alarms

and a deep haze. It was as if she'd never existed,

despite the cold Christmas sun

brightening the blinds.

After a run, her sweat smelled like flowers.

She would shower, towel off, forget to smile

but a wink was all I needed. A nudge,

a smack in the ribs. "That's dumb,"

she'd say when I told her it was dangerous out there,

the roads were bad, it was dark. It's Christmas

Eve, stay inside with me,

just this once. Now frost lines the crack

in the pane, dividing

it. I really should get it fixed.

A new window could change

things like drafts and high electric bills.

The smoke alarms sound too similar.

Flashing lights seen through the exposed bones

of trees. The sheet pulled across her face.

She looked so serene. I'd better get home,

or the ham will be no good. "Sir, your relation?"

"Yes. Yes she is." We didn't look alike.

Without kids, did we even exist? I have photos,

the memory of her skin melting against mine,

sweat beneath the covers. It smells like flowers

at her casket. It's a new year next week. Her presents

are still under the tree, the lights dark.

There's no memory in this. I should really

turn off the oven, maybe

get this window replaced.

© 2013  Luke Evans

Luke Evans writes sometimes, about life or science or love or mountains or whatever else his experience or imagination allows. He lives in Colorado and works too many hours, but enjoys the views anyway. His poetry has been most recently found in The View From Here, Poetry Quarterly, and Joyful.

Copyright © 2013

Touch: The Journal of Healing

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