Sunday, December 28, 2008


New Year's Eve 1988

11:58 on the clock-face
so you pulled over
to the side of Bradford Road
cheeks glowing green
heat humming
eyes never leaving the dial
fingers poised just so
determined to press the tape in
precisely at midnight.

I wanted you to kiss me.

Instead there was
only U2 thickening
the air between us
you closing your eyes
me shifting
and outside the peely bark
on the birches
bristling against the cold.

- Irene Latham

Ever been in a relationship with someone who, for whatever reasons, couldn't give you what you needed from them?

Sigh. It happens. And the only thing to be done about it is to move on, however difficult that may be.

“I chose and my world was shaken. So what? The choice may have been mistaken; the choosing was not. You have to move on.”

- Stephen Sondheim


  1. Oh! I was hoping you would post this one! I found this in your book a few weeks ago, and I have been gravitating toward it. In fact, yesterday morning I woke up with my mind reciting the line "U2 thickening the air between us," recalling a disappointing New Year's Eve of my own c. 1992.
    Somehow that touchstone of New Year's Day (the event and the U2 song) conjure those old memories that are more poignant and less painful thanks to the many years between.
    Thank you so much for writing this one, and now sharing it!

  2. As to your question, yes. Happily that was a long time ago. I hope your New Years day and New Year are fulled only with fulfilled wishes, poetry and love.

  3. Thank you so much for your thoughtful comment, you have been on my mind lately also. I just got caught up on your blog, your poetry is amazing. I am glad you are almost done with The Witches of Gee's Bend and your new book sounds very intriguing also. How is your dad doing?

    I hope had a wonderful Christmas and a very happy and peaceful new year.


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