after Jack Gilbert
The first night, carrying the small box
down an open road, I loved the angles
of horizon. Later I shifted the box
under my arm, then onto my shoulder.
Finally all of me blistered. Now I am still
walking and still I cannot muster any anger
because in the box are my white sandals,
no longer by his oxfords at the front door.
My last defense / Is the present tense
- Gwendolyn Brooks, “Old Mary”
My plans: sharing
a ham biscuit for breakfast
at Wallace Station
on my days off with you
waiting for you.
I slide into the side
of the booth
Back to the door,
I eat our whole breakfast
myself, without napkins
or silverware, grease & salt
covering the hands I always
kept clean for you.
Anne Charlton is a second-year MFA student in poetry at Vanderbilt University and literature columnist for PolicyMic. She graduated from Purdue University with a B.A. in English and Creative Writing. She was named a finalist in Yemassee’s 2013 Pocataligo Poetry Contest, and her work has been published in Yemassee, Toad the Journal, and A Clean, Well-Lighted Place.