blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsFall 2010  Vol. 9  No. 2
print version


Widow’s Walk

Do you believe that friends you walk
with now think you’re okay?
Maybe some do. But some don't.
You and I are walking the footbridge
high over the white water river
that splits Richmond’s city,
a bridge suspended from the highway
above us that thumps with traffic.

Winds blowing down the James
carry off our careful conversation.
We bump into each other avoiding
cyclists, then hold onto the railing
looking down into whipped-up rapids
where the kayaker died last month
the same day Richard did.

It's a warm day in February,
even with the winds, more like May.
I love it.

But I know what you’re thinking
as we let go the rail:
Why I am up here on this bridge?
Why is it swaying? Why are the rapids
swirling, the friend beside me crazy?

What pounding noise around us?
Why did I just use the phrase
“Aside from my sorrow . . . ”?

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