Vermont: Fall’s End
Lying in a bath in Vermont in the early evening
With a small candle and a wet dog in the corner,
If the man downstairs she came here with
Is as safe as the warm bathwater and the rain falling to music.
The window is divided into ticktacktoe squares
Misted from the heat.
In the warm bath she watches the oil and water
Play with one another
Breathing in lavender while she breathes out fear
Adding hot water every few minutes.
She watches her body appear
Through the soap and water letting her belly rise like a small mountain
And her toes peek back: as disembodied little villagers
Looking for supper.
Tonight there will be dinner and family to meet
They will bring magnifying glasses and notepads.
The man has begun to peel back her heart
And she practices putting it back together