It was my right to fail. To swerve
out from the panopticon of medication
and embrace disorder.
To curve under the weight of
errant options, become a grave.
I’m a yellow mango, pitted.
After it was done I had nothing to say.
Silence the slim wake of loss. Months.
I didn’t cry at the Swiss Chalet.
I didn’t cease to exist, so I took to drinking again
and cal-mag supplements and even travel.
I wrote a poem ten pages long.
I was alone and then not alone.
And then alone again and not alone, again.
I rejected ownership but it haunted
some mornings and I would search
the empty house––
one eye open the other turned in,
then scuttle back to bed.
I dreamed of houses for days
on end, attics that broke upwards
into greater more solid spaces
like a tooth growing into an occupied gum.
I climbed out, studied the nature
of obligation and returned to my old job.
I’m one of those women who is always chilly,
but I learned to put more clothes on. •