Broken Dreams


After the phone call to my mother

I slumped onto the couch,

letting my fingers grace the

itchy material I never liked.

Was this irony?

After all my worries,

after all my paranoia,

I had persuaded myself

that I only thought nonsense.

I’d been right to worry

and now it was far too late.

I supposed I might as well

go upstairs, change clothes

before my aunt arrived,

to steal me from this place

that I had once loved.

Where my love was stolen

by the arms of many men

and zipped into a black bag.

In the bathroom, I pulled

a new shirt over my old

and faced the mirror.

I wanted to believe that he was

on the other side of the glass

unseen, listening.

I sat on the counter and rambled,

careful not to weep,

I couldn’t let him see me cry.

I told him my dreams 

about us, that he never knew:

about how I wanted to live with him

once he found a new apartment

and I’d go to his old school;

about how he’d see my graduation

and we’d go out to eat afterward

and he wouldn’t have a beer

with his meal, just as happy;

about how he’d live through

the surgery he would never have,

victorious as always.

They asked for me downstairs

and I left his ghost in the mirror,

cradling my broken dreams.