I’ve been held up

October 30, 2014

in traffic, like everyone, window down,
             exhaust and summer air wrinkling
             above I-94, crawling toward the Loop

by thrift stores anywhere along the way, she
             inside hunting cast-off cast iron, I
             at rest in a parking-lot novel

because of a worn-out hip joint, its new
             titanium step-twin taking two
             years to find the other’s stride

in love and loss, her breast cancer, my
             tears, her pale face vulnerable amid
             surgeons, percentages, fear

like the feel of a gun barrel back of my skull,
             one long-ago college night, masked
             men demanding money, drugs—all

of which, this warming March morning,
             makes each step along this sunlit side-
             walk light, light, sweet Godlit light