Amelia was Crying a River

Poem by Bob Bradshaw. Photo by Kees Terberg.

Your eyes were overflowing buckets.
I sloshed out of your apartment,
my shoes black funeral boats

as I floated past your dear parents
in their long splinter of a boat.

Your exhausted father
was waving a furious oar at me,

your brothers wading the quick waters,
kids perched like wrens on their shoulders.

Roofs, antiques, cattle drifted downstream.
I turned around.
I hadn't meant to hurt others.

I hesitated at your door.
I put my ear against it.
Your perpetual sobbing hadn't subsided.

I wanted to try
and explain myself as I had
a hundred times before...could you forgive me?

An empty coffin with brass handles
knocked against your dock.

Maybe it was time to move
to higher ground. 

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