The Starkey Flythe, Jr., Memorial Prize
These days I wake to my new neighbor,
a mahogany goddess a floor above,
our clocks synchronized for five,
picture her slipping
from between silk sheets,
while I shrug off an old cotton gown
damp with restless sweats.
Soon she’s busy juicing
blueberries or bananas,
perhaps with a measure of flax,
or hemp hearts—
her high-torque blender
trembling my Mr. Coffee.
I hear her dryer drumming
wrinkles from her yoga clothes,
sleek florescent pinks I covet,
buttoning into my business blouse,
wriggling on a pair of hot hose,
silently totting up the years
till I can afford to retire.
Maybe then I’ll get myself a dog
a small red sausage thing
whose nails tap a nervous SOS
on slippery faux wood floors—
whose ceaseless soulful mourning
the moment I am gone
tells the whole world
just how much I am loved.