Down Jacket in Back Seat
by Bebe Cook

Once again I’m dressed inappropriately. I pull
a summer shrug tightly, crossing arms over breast.
Thin cotton offers minimal protection ; I am solo,

yet I hear your voice asking, where is your coat?
Do you remember those first years of marriageable navigation?
Once I tried to explain my unnatural aversion

to outerwear. Why at times the burden of a coat
too heavy to bear and how my choice
of outerwear is independent of wind or weather. But more so

an accounting. An equation where minutes of exposure
are weighted against the troublesome nature of ownership.
I rebel against repetition, the constant donning

and doffing; much like the light spilling into our room
from the hall, requiring someone’s attention
to switch it off and on. It was December

of the year of heavy sighs, when our red Chevrolet
left me road-side, before we came to understand
the beauty of simple solutions.

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