How It Will Happen, When by Dorianne Laux

There you are, exhausted from another night of crying,
curled up on the couch, the floor, at the foot of the bed,
anywhere you fall you fall down crying, half amazed
at what the body is capable of, not believing you can cry
anymore. And there they are: his socks, his shirt, your
underwear, and your winter gloves, all in a loose pile
next to the bathroom door, and you fall down again.
Someday, years from now, things will be different:
the house clean for once, everything in its place, windows
shining, sun coming in easily now, skimming across
the thin glaze of wax on the wood floor. You’ll be peeling
an orange or watching a bird leap from the edge of the rooftop
next door, noticing how, for instance, her body is trapped
in the air, only a moment before gathering the will to fly
into the ruff at her wings, and then doing it: flying.
You’ll be reading, and for a moment you’ll see a word
you don’t recognize, a simple words like cup or gate or wisp
and you’ll ponder like a child discovering language.
Cup, you’ll say over and over until it begins to make sense,
and that’s when you’ll say it, for the first time, out loud: He’s dead.
He’s not coming back, and it will be the first time you believe it.

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