Waiting for the Mail
by Tracy Darling

Always the same small white envelope with the familiar loops
in her steady hand addressed only to me.
But I know two identical copies exist, hand-written
all the words equal just like her love divided by three
addressed to my two sisters, not identical to me, but similar
brown hair, eyes, freckles reflecting the morning sun like our different tastes in coffee, one a little sweeter,
one a little richer,
one a little deeper.
And I wonder
did she mail all three letters the same day or hold onto mine to make up for the distance between
so they would arrive the same day? Just like her to ignore we don’t pick up the phone like we used to just to relive happy childhoods.
Too many hard times tangled in the lines.
The unopened letter weighs down my purse like it weighs on my heart
for days, sometimes weeks
until I am numb enough
to take the silver letter opener in hand
slice another small cut
into my heart.

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