After twenty years, how could you
forget the painting of the pumas
dancing a quadrille on our bedroom wall,
and the mica hanging from our ceiling?
When you wouldn’t let me fiddle
with the buttons of your suit
that evening, I should have known
the project deadline had passed,
and you were headed for early retirement.
I wanted to waltz but dozed off after a slice
of your chocolate chip cheesecake,
awoke to find the folded note
beside my pillow and you
were gone. Not until the funeral
did I realize you stopped gazing at the ginger
mole on my sun-burned face days before
you sailed for Bermuda.
Sayeeda T Ahmad is a poet and nonfiction writer. Her debut poetry collection, Across Oceans, was published by Bengal Lights Books.