He is Afraid of Dying

He Is Afraid of Dying

It is more what he does not say.
Perhaps you know him too well.
Perhaps you wish

you knew him in ways
you may never know him.
In the meantime,

serve him cherries you pitted
last July, frozen and dark,
their juice a torch song for summer.

Offer him slender volumes of poems,
write invisible notes in the margins
about the sound the moon makes

when it rises in you. Offer him
your moon, your hands, your years
that wait ahead like unpoured cups of tea.

We do not know. We do not know
and what we do not know
curls up beside us and kisses the words

that try to perch on our lips
before it blows them away.
Do we ever know what to say

to each other? Now. Heat the water.
Take down the cups.
Serve him the tiny silver-edged leaves.

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