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A Week Later

 A week later, I said to a friend: I don't
think I could ever write about it.
Maybe in a year I could write something.
There is something in me maybe someday to be written; now it is folded, and folded, and folded, like a note in school.
And in my dream someone was playing jacks, and in the air there was a huge, thrown, tilted jack on fire.
And when I woke up, I found myself counting the days since I had last seen my husband-only two years, and some weeks, and hours.
We had signed the papers and come down to the ground floor of the Chrysler Building, the intact beauty of its lobby around us like a king's tomb, on the ceiling the little painted plane, in the mural, flying.
And it entered my strictured heart, this morning, slightly, shyly as if warily, untamed, a greater sense of the sweetness and plenty of his ongoing life, unknown to me, unseen by me, unheard, untouched-but known, seen, heard, touched.
And it came to me, for moments at a time, moment after moment, to be glad for him that he is with the one he feels was meant for him.
And I thought of my mother, minutes from her death, eighty-five years from her birth, the almost warbler bones of her shoulder under my hand, the eggshell skull, as she lay in some peace in the clean sheets, and I could tell her the best of my poor, partial love, I could sing her out with it, I saw the luck and luxury of that hour.

Poem by Sharon Olds
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