Talking to My Dead Sister on the Anniversary of Her Death
by Pat Hanahoe-Dosch

____________"Break the glass______shout
____________and break the glass______ force the room”
______________________________- Jean Valentine

I am sitting at the kitchen table
drinking green tea and listening
to the very loud clock in the next room nag
I must leave soon. Morning
light is only beginning to brighten
the corners of each window.
In these long years without you I’ve learned
you really won’t ever talk to me again,
or write a letter, or call, or be here, or
forgive me a multitude of small cruelties.
Your children are grown, married, have
children, houses, jobs. I think they’re happy,
though your absence gouged a detour
they haven’t quite GPS’d their way out of yet.
I’d like to know if you are only
those bones cluttering the casket in your grave,
or if some part of you is somewhere,
exasperated at our longing, trying to

______shatter the glass and leap____________into the air’s momentum,
____________lighting up trees and air_______________sparks from a___campfire
______someone threw a thick branch into_________leaving no burn,
______no ash, no smoke, to scatter____________ecstatically in the air,
____________flashing through the long night _______________so many of us sleep through.

It’s time for me to leave,
and you’re still not talking.

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