Tony Imo Dreams of Her
Thirty Years Later
Every bit as clear as if
they were real. They are real.
As sharp as if they were
They are happening now.
The face as it was then. It is then.
The smile as disarming as always.
It is always.
Tony Imo wakes with
a perplexed half-grin on his face,
eyes squinting into the sunrise
that pierces the living room sliders,
slices into the dark bedroom.
Time to get up, relive
the past few minutes over coffee.
The voice as musical as a ballad.
A ballad streams in the background.
The tilt of the head
just like yesterday. It is yesterday.
The hair soft in morning backlight.
Morning backlight lives, a digital pool
poured from a hundred images.
The eyes as bright
as stars in a dark sky.
A dark sky drapes the scene.
Imo takes his first couple of
sips, as wondrous as the long-gone
first two drags, & indulges his ego
by saying, You made a good pot of
coffee this morning, Tony,
feeds his obsession, wonders
where she is.
Time to get moving, carry
the weight of this visit
through his tasks.
She made her appearance
to play two roles:
the believer & the skeptic.
Feeling blessed with his gift of
a handmade object of
no clear identity.
Feeling cursed with the gift made,
she says, by another woman’s hand.
Both of her argue the truth
while he looks on
as mute as a pillar of salt.
Imo stands with his half-empty
second cup, recounts
the long list of visits, where
she seduced, chastised, teased,
criticized, humored, debated,
wonders whether he gave her this
power so he could atone, bask,
self-flagellate, or just remember.
He knows he will dream again.