Crossing Bryant Park Susan Robertson (1943 –1997)
by Hugh Seidman
Rink down — up last fall mirroring summer.
1200 steps to work — Seventh to Madison.
First, past 50 — your bridal two step.
New, wet grass invoking tomb.
Father: suicide; Mother: survivor; Sister: fatal breast.
Tai chi fighter, shrink, scholarship Bryn Mawr waif.
Lungs sicker than said or known.
Small talk — then you were gone.
10,000 years ago: not statue, urn, stone.
10,000 years ago: sexual proof of lives.
Left you that August — who shall say why ?
Hammocked dozer; oil – slick lake rainbow.
10,000 years ago: hope — oldest karma.
10,000 years ago: friends — forever.
Also — noduled, cut out womb.
Transfusion, perhaps, the future tumor root.
High – heeled graduates’ pale lilies, arterial roses.
Memoir of the body — 10,000 years ago.
Heard your name, as if called.
Neurons that will not be annulled.
Nothing to do but abhor the wind.
Implored the immortals for solace.
Obscene Brigitte: vulva peppers, black rooster.
Red – tongued Kali: lei of heads, corpse trampler.
Reached at last — furnace blast.
A few pounds of dust, ash, bone.
Carbon tundra turning under suns.
Born to your planet — less than a grass pebble.