Poetry by Dave O’Leary : There it Is

16.
His parents
divorce.
He can’t understand
where the love went,
how it could
end and leave
nothing but a hardened
rectangle of vitriol
and a slew of insults
that he tries sometimes to bury
in the backyard
and sometimes
in intoxicants.


22.
His first real love
ends without insults
after three years
and they part
like long lost
friends
who won’t recognize
each other when they bump
into each other around town
after months of not bumping
into each other in their apartment.
He looks for it
in photos though,
and he sees it in one
from that time at the zoo
when they bumped into a friend
from work and the secret
of their new love
became known.


34.
He says, “I do.”
His second love
says it too
and after the honeymoon
they set their pictures
about their apartment and sit on the couch
with beers
and binged shows
and foot massages
and silent books
and they settle in,
sink in,
into each other,
each other’s lives,
and he marvels
at their secret to happiness.


43.
His own
divorce.
The sunken couch
that had so needed
replacing
never was and he drops
it off
at the dump
when they both move
out to different
parts of town
and then she
to a whole other town
and in the evenings
he thinks
about how she’d said often in person
these last few years
and through her lawyer
at the end
that it was never
really there,
not really. But he doesn’t
believe her. He just doesn’t
know, still doesn’t
know, where it went,
and she took all the pictures
when
she
left.


56.
Aging
and still single but in a new town
in a new state
by the sea.
The last woman he asked
out turned him down.
She told him he
was sweet but she
wasn’t looking,
wasn’t interested
in that sort of thing,
not in the now
anyway but thanks
for the drink.
And that was fine.
And he went home
to sit on his new couch
with an intoxicant or two
knowing he’d be back out
tomorrow
because it’s always,
at least so he thinks,
he hopes,
just around
the corner
and down
by the swooshing sound of the sea.
Maybe that’s it
just over there.

Dave O’Leary is a writer and musician in Seattle. He’s had two novels
published and has published work in, among others, Slate.com,
Versification, and Reflex Fiction. His collection of poetry and prose–I
Hear Your Music Playing Night and Day–will be published in May 2021 by
Cajun Mutt Press
.

Twitter: @dolearyauthor

Instagram: @d_o_leary

featured photo by Fadi Xd on Unsplash.com