For Michele by Esseboe Kwami Nyamidie
I am making the bed alone in a long time.
I kept it the way you last designed it
The brown orange sheet with four elephants around an eight-petal flower in place.
You were a walking body of pain
who mowed the grass,
watered the plants,
and did the laundry
because you said staying active brought you some relief.
I rarely did the laundry.
But today I placed some dirty clothes in the washing machine.
Today, I went out and came back home for the first time in a while
without you being there.
You often would cut your calls short when I came back.
“He’s here, DeeDee, I need to talk to him.”
And you told me all that happened to you that day.
Devouring silence lingers here now,
this strong enemy we fight back
as we tune in to hear
you faintly on a new channel
in our hearts
in our wakeful dreams
there where we dare
to vanquish the ravaging foe
with hopes that you will offer us
a sneak preview of coming adventures
on which we, too, will, sooner or later or someday,