In the Late Season

In the awkward center
of this small yellowing room

I may swerve into the beams
of purposeful light as antidote

to this tight-wound rug.
Eating this cherry

can I still strip fruit from pit?
What if my throat receives the stone?

This is what led my mother to say
she was going away,

though she could never
follow through:

Sometimes the space between
the rungs of the blinds were

too wide for her, the teetering
weight of a glass stem,

the faded gloss shine
of the dinner menu against her hands.

She could not touch a fork.
She could not manage.

I’m sorry I could not make
the dinner.