46 – Solitaire


I was up at the cemetery
when the bridge closed.
It was a dry run.
The rain ruined my tux.
It was a rental.
I hid in the mouth
of a mausoleum
and played solitaire
with dead leaves.
A pair of headless angels
offered alternative routes:
the freeway was too risky;
my shoes and cufflinks
would drown me.
The ace of spades
kept on not rolling.
A boy practiced wide turns
in his parents minivan
for an hour. I waved once.
No fresh flowers. No tiny flags.
Just tall trees hovering over
a claw-armed backhoe.
I used my rented cummerbund
to clean the pioneer markers,
propped up their rotten crosses.
Sounds of grinding life
on the dead bridge drifted up
the hill. I asked the angels
how long. They couldn’t say.
I shuffled and shuffled
again. The dead leaves fed
into one another. The game
went on.

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