He doesn’t write poetry anymore,
even if he still collects it, reads it, saves it, treasures
faded verses from his wife the way connoisseurs
savor vinyl over metallic rainbows on disc.
I don’t mind not knowing, but I can’t stand not asking.
The record needle hits the groove wrong;
he stumbles over words that aren’t there,
rummaging for an answer he doesn’t really have.
He doesn’t write poetry anymore
and his confusion is strangely endearing.
But there’s a lyricism to his words that I love,
poetic lines inserted between the daily grind
of character names and who said what;
voiceless boys in white and draymen carting the dead to saltwater lakes,
elegiac undertones that haunt historians and forlorn painters.
He doesn’t write poetry anymore –
except when he does.