I know you haven’t made your mind up yet,But I would never do you wrong. I’ve known it from the moment that we met-
No doubt in my mind where you belong.
Carol claims sandwiches taste best cut on the diagonals-
the same sweet certainty
with which she says so many things.
I approach our kitchen counter like a chemistry set,
I control jelly to bread ratios and the angles of digestion
find no difference,
and still she insists.
My parents taught me so many ways to say
My father spoke in silences-
left the air around him shimmering with heat,
loaded every roll of his shoulders with weight
then passed that yoke to me.
with the thick vein of her forehead pulsating,
slammed doors and wept.
I learned to sing acrimony in quarter-tone scale.
And I sing well.
When I find a tune Carol recognizes,
we can sing a surly canon,
harmonize sighs and shrugs and rolling eyes.
I know there are other songs. I've heard their hum in the homes of friends, the descants spill out open windows and the melodies nestle in the corners with warm resonance. I'm trying to learn the words, but they're sung softly- so softly. So I stand at our kitchen counter, tap my toe in quarter time, and begin to cut at the corners.