by Laurie Soriano
They are hollow-boned, take their clawed hands
and guide them gently to the car, rolling the little suitcase
so light it must be filled with feathers.
Her hair is a puff of white, his a scattering of dry grass.
They bicker still, chirp/cheep in harmony,
nothing ever clarified, nothing really matters.
Tired from the flight, they totter off to bed;
if you peek in, you will see their bodies side by side,
done with hormones, the precious ragged breath lifting their chests,
heads barely denting the down pillows. In the earliest of morning
they are perched on their kitchen chairs with the newspapers,
the day already swinging full when you rise.
It is getting to be time now. When you get
the phone call, or perhaps you will be
in the hospital room when his or her breath
flutters to silence, open up your hands
in a gesture both of letting go
and embracing. In the weeks that follow
keep your eye out for a sparrow hopping
and twittering a bit too close, a lark
that seems to be smiling on a branch nearby
and then shows off flying for you.
LAURIE SORIANO is a music attorney in Los Angeles, representing songwriters, recording artists and others in the music and film industries. She has had poems published in various journals and has studied with Daniel Hoffman, Alan Williamson and Eloise Klein-Healy.