In winter when the towels get dry just by being in the house

by Diane Wald

My undertaker
wears a lively cologne.
I like it. I believe

in his religion,
for he has seen a man pack up his falsetto
and travel, with only a sweaty seltzer bottle,
to the ends of existence. That same life

was full of heartbeats
that had made his heart beat bad. It was
the worst day of his life,
but not his fault. It seemed

as if the only comfort he could take
was in the fey voice of the TV weather person,
the local one, not the one who simply

refers you to “your neck of the woods.”
In my neck of the woods my moss
stretches out like a soft knitted scarf
intending to enjoy itself.

Exhausted by the surreal,
sometimes we falter.

Sometimes we keep ourselves
in a different room,
emerging only
to try to confuse the crowd
of innocent bystanders.
All we want is to see
the wonders of the world returning.

All we want is to steal a whiteiced cake
off the trembling tea tray and get clean away.