A Few Uses for It When It’s Done

Letters can line the catbox, or (catless?) compost—
where every last promise shape-shifts to useful mush.

Miniature painting from Iran – couldn’t its inlaid frame hold
up the leg of that abandoned coffee table? Make a snow-dome

for your desk, shake it up now and then to watch snowflakes
settle at the base. there are statues on Major’s Hill: stick your

loss next to Laurier, then leave it alone. Robins returning
to the March melt will ring this stone sentinel with their leavings.

Aren’t you done looking for Reason in the park? by now
you’ll have rubbed off tarnish: set your toy idol in the window

so the next one passing can see how it shines, this intermittent
trinket, tchotchke of tossed and lost Scrabble tiles.

Write it off, that boy you used to know, used to love, used to
pardon my Biblical reference. This is the art of lost and found.


— Rhonda Douglas, How to Love a Lonely Man

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