In Quintana Roo

by Donna Hilbert

Kathy gives me a card
with angels on dolphin back
swirling from sea to sky.

I think of the morning last spring
when from our window
we spotted a pod of dolphin
and you abandoned breakfast
to join them for a swim.

The card’s inscription:
Together we will transcend
the illusion that is time
and space.

Transcend. Joke on my license plate.
Comic motto for the non-believer.
Maybe where you are now
you know what that word means.

Not me. I’m in Mexico.
Interregnum of old life and new.
Angry with you
for this dislocation.
I loved you in my other life.

I dreamt last night my friend
left her green parrot in my care,
but I failed to feed
or give it water
and when she came to claim it,
the bird lay dead
next to a vase of browning lilies.

Suddenly, you appear
in the dark sea
of my dream, saying
I don’t remember when
we last made love.

Be patient, Dear Heart,
I’m learning how
to love you dead.

excerpted from Transforming Matter, Pearl Editions, 2000