By JOHN FREEMAN
Sundays I’d walk down the hill toward the green four o’clock
dark beginning like a rumor—
always she was leaning over the counter, head tipped toward
a tiny phone,
her husband turning the pages of a
Daily Mail like a man
whose suspicions of human nature were
being fed fresh evidence.
Stale fryer fat, ale, black and tans in the fridge.
They knew I’d be there before the match started.
You alright yeah
Every Sunday a matinee I attended for three years
as volcanoes exploded
and she died,
white slipped into my beard
wars began and others ended.
Each Sunday the words gathering new weight
as words do when you repeat them.
I didn’t know but by halftime if I wasn’t too pissed
I’d walk home in the furred darkness before the beer wore off
and a sudden gust of wind could blow cold air on my heart.
John Freeman is the founder of Freeman’s, a literary annual, and executive editor at Alfred A. Knopf. He is also the author and editor of a dozen books. Wind, Trees, his new collection of poems, will be published this fall by Copper Canyon Press.