Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2012 v11n1
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Young Widower

There is a moment at the beginning of your new marriage
when it bugs you that your new wife
still uses the email address with her maiden name.
Didn’t you get married again to clear up such confusions?
You can try this at home. Drive into the middle of a park.
Drive a spade into the soil around the largest tree
until the tip comes up covered in blood.
You have to drive the tool right through the thick
fur of ground rodents to leave a mark.
Out on a bike ride, some chipmunk or squirrel
shakes the entire hedge trying to scurry away
from your fat tire. It makes sense to live in fear of pain
about as much as your dead wife’s brother suddenly
loves rock climbing. What were you thinking,
running down some helpless creature
minding her own business, indifferent to you?
Your first wife, she wanted nothing more than to shed
the dead weight of your name that clicked,
like a busted shoulder, every time she tried to use it.  

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