Driving Back from the Carwash

driving back from the carwash
seemed like a good enough time to tell you
that i didn’t want children.

that night we ate smoked fish
& watched something with Bryan Cranston
on subscription.
i burned my mouth on an egg.

in the morning i wrote on a legal pad
about Orestes; my desire to avoid
passing on the tragedies
of my monstrous family.

then you said that becoming pregnant
would feel like escaping death.
and so, to escape death,
you would have to escape me.

i went back to the carwash
to have the inside done.
sat on the bonnet, and for five minutes
or so, the sun felt like a bleed on my brain.

i drove. looked at some cows wandering
& pausing in a field. i stared at a lake
with a purple sheen,

& thought of you in the future
holding a gurgling baby above your head.
the little family you made;
unencumbered by death & childless men.