“But When I Got There”
But when I got there she was gone. She’d left
No plea, no word where she’d be; I read her psalms a while,
A scribbled promissory note–revealed, not written–styled
In slashes, rushed laconic storms as if she’d dreamt,
Then scribbled some several images and icons that came
To mind, their colors, shapes, emphatic significance long lost.
But yes, of course, a cornacopia of some importance with costs
To others never mentioned, measures all the same;
Her markers, a pocket watch, a dance card, rounds again
Erased, replaced by later exponents and functions, the last
Of greater importance than the first, as if somehow all past
Positions, titles, desertions and queues were prearranged
By station assigned more than content stoked and enflamed,
And as with her I had come first, I no longer had a name.