My feet are wet, I am wading through moments.
Soggy, I sit.
The water rises
as I soak in the memory of you. Soak and remember.
Just as it once took you away, it is always the water
that brings you back.
A shower, a rare commodity in a 1982 foreigner’s
always in search of warm water.
I followed a trail of dewy drops to find you. You–
moistly compressed, yet fresh, in your incongruous
Your hair was wet and a halo of steam crowned your
I breathed in the scent of tropical fruit, of papayas
ripening in the heat.
A south of all south’s heat. A human heat. The heat
That night I waited for you at Notre Dame. Notre, I’ll be damned,
I thought, as I circled that church until finally
walking across the fit-together stones of her courtyard
with the walk of a man whose prayers are not answered
The moon was mirrored in the stained-glass windows
and the dark all around wore its light.
I remember still how the warm salty breeze of you
of waiting, and mostly,
You taught me your
Rules of Survival in Cold, Cruel Countries:
We drank cheap Wimpy’s coffee and
jumped turnstiles.With dental floss and toothpicks,
you rigged coinless calls
across continents and oceans.
I listened to your language of wind
swishing through palm trees,