A Widower’s Lament/ I’ve Lived In This House Too Long

Kimberly Dixon-Mays

My daughter’s life is a chilled jar
on the back of the glass shelf.
I never open it, so it never turns.
Or, so I think – perhaps it never keeps.
I didn’t master women’s work,
can only reheat leftovers on the stove.

Her life is an old recipe card
that once brought food familiar,
now worn and stained
from another’s use.

It is a perched appliance
that would need a good washing
if ever pulled down,
the old wedding gift meant for parties,
instruction book now gone,
no practice to refer.

Her life is the drawer beside the stove,
stuck half-open by the tangle caught on its lip,
the one that holds just the thing you’re searching for,
if you dared look.

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