so I had a moment of nirvana
the other evening drained of
desire a moment of just being
kneeling cupping the breast
of my old wife in memory
of eroticism past embracing
her as she sat at the dining table
and in the aire the still guitar
lentamento notes of Bach
painfully beautiful

we had been dancing in the
bright arena of our marriage
a place we have visited on
rare occasions surrounded
by empty seats illuminated
by theater lights

a stage with no props and no
masks and just two actors
saying the lines of their
unvarnished truth

close to final act of the play
that’s been running more than
half a century where the topic
is the morbid process possibly
having gotten to the slippery
slope phase the downhill
journey physiology takes
beginning in relative youth

a thickening of the bottom
portion of the esophagus
causing symptoms of heartburn
is all we know but we leap
to cancer and death

that was our dance the nirvana
being an early instance of grieving