Letter by HaoJan

Breaking it Off:
Letter from Anne Sexton

It is not enough
I have waited, a woman
with her knees bent to the dawn?

I slept with your promises, too,
welcomed them like I did
the slit of your eye on my back.

I celebrated with an empty nightgown
in a bed too big for two,
seclusion the gift of Lucky Strikes,
my vodka my booze.

Like a madman aflutter I nursed
nightmares in my arms,
rocked them to sleep, baby,
picked at their meaning
till my knuckles bled.

Your name hoarse in my throat,
I swallowed whole days
woven of hunches, hard-guessed
the rumors delivered in pieces.

God, you can be so cold.

When you needed oxygen,
I buried my lips
in your good right hand,
our habit of words never easy.

You covered my eyes
with your insistent kiss
and still I could see
I was losing you.

Tonight I get to watch
the pall of roses
failing at my window.

— Maureen Doallas, author of Neruda's Memoirs

This poem is offered as part of our May theme: Roses

All poems, art, and photos are public domain or used by permission of author or publisher. Photo by HaoJan, via Flickr.
Artist Debbie Young

Art by Debbie Young

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Emily Wierenga


Our Art Features Editor here at Every Day Poems. Emily Wierenga is a writer, public speaker, and would eat color if she could.
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