You would heat cardamon seeds
and white wine when you couldn’t sleep.
I drink another glass of Bordeaux

to try to decompress from caregiving
the woman I live with who has Alzheimer’s.
You would have respected

our unconventional relationship, since when
she is asked, she offers we are not married.
She walks into the tree break where the bear

had been to prune back a walkway
she believes is useful for all the people
in the house to use as a go-through,

although there are no others in the house.
She used to ask me, for some years,
if I had a breakthrough, meaning something

spiritual, and I would always respond,
yes, but with as many stars in the sky
there are as many breakthroughs as stars.

With as many breakthroughs we may have
noted and shared, we can no longer
communicate, since she walks into

the sunlight as if it were the darkest period
before the dawn where no sun rose.
I think of you sipping warm herbed wine

after working on poems late at night,
with the clarity of just looking out at the stars
you loved to savor, seeing them sparkling

in the night sky, the autumn constellations
tumbling into a pool, if they could,
and still do, of nothing but pure wonder.