The Summer House
I let the envelope fall to the floor unopened,
and yes, it felt falsely dramatic, even if she
was no longer there to point that out. Let me
go back and set the scene: mid-afternoon,
too early for a drink but a reasonable time
to start thinking about one. In the kitchen:
a plain white envelope propped against
the salt shaker. I won’t pretend to be surprised.
I watch it for a while, then flick it onto the floor
and nudge it under that ugly bird’s-eye
maple cabinet of mismatched dishes, way back
where it might easily be overlooked when the house
is cleaned. Some day you may find yourself
living here for a month in the summer,
and one afternoon the clear light from the water,
which I remember so fondly, will touch an edge
of that envelope as you sit by the window. Of course
you’ll kneel down to pull it out. And yet
you hesitate. Why not open it?
It’s as much yours as anyone’s now.