Letter to an Absentee Landlord


She writes letters to God

and answers don’t appear

in words, but in blue jays

and beetles, in hummingbird

beaks. She’s spinning

her wings and hungry.

What God doesn’t say is,

You are not your salary.

Practice this a million times.

God says through the daffodils,

Allergy season is three weeks away.

Your father died and you still feel

that pain.
No one wants her

father’s ceramic dalmatian.

No one wants years of soap

on a rope. She donates

to charities. She doesn’t eat

for weeks after losing

her opening act, the comedian

in the wide ties and broken body.

Now veins appear in her reflection,

lines where there were no lines

before. She fingers a prayer

on a steamy bathroom mirror.

Practice this a million times.

There’s no room for the new

towel rack, shelves spill

with pills, razors whisper:

Come here. She fills a closet

with linens, an old headboard,

but what she really needs is sleep,

what she needs is the squawk

of a blue jay to wake her up.