I spilled red wine on 

your sweater tonight, the one 

I got after you died.

Just over a year ago, a dear friend passed away from an agressive cancer. She was a vibrant, no-nonesense person who knew what she liked, what she didn’t, and wasn’t afraid to tell you. Her house was always immaculate, but if you were lucky, she’d mail you birthday cards filled with confetti that would spill out upon opening, leaving your own floors in need of a broom. 

I wrote today’s haiku about her and then tried to expand it into a more fully formed poem. It was really hard. They painting is an image I’ve painted before, but this time the figure is a bit more burdened, a bit less care-free. 

 

Crying over spilled wine

 

I spilled red wine on 

your sweater tonight, the one 

I got after you died.

 

And I thought about you– 

drinking wine

Without messes

 

It’s wine time

you would say

Pulling out a stemless glass

From a perfectly organized cabinet

 

But I am careless–

no neatly stacked cloth cocktail napkins

always at the ready

 

I am sorry.

not just for the wine– 

 

that I am wearing your sweater

that we aren’t toasting each other on the patio

 

I am sorry 

that when I pull it over me

I cry a little

 

And that sometimes I don’t

 

Your sweater now stained with a little bit of me

Like this poem

Like this grief

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