The Promise

There’s a promise
that I sense, lurking
in this room where you
sit and read the
morning paper everyday.
“This damn government
will be the death of us”,
you say as you sip
your Maxwell House
then get up and dust
your shirt and
tighten your tie.

Your authoritative steps,
resonant against the gleaming
wooden floor,
scare the promise away
but I will it back.
Like me, it is just
a shadow in your life.

I want it to talk to me
when you leave.
I want to talk.
I want to feel capable
of dispelling words out
of my sandpaper throat
that could once sing
notes only dogs could hear.

Then you happened.
Maybe ‘you’ happened to
the promise too.
Maybe it’s just a ghost,
a memory of what you
And it haunts me
when you leave.

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