Reflections in a Steamed Mirror

I had written not long ago about my ex-wife, and subsequently a friend of mine left a note on my Facebook page to the effect that she was not entirely to blame, it takes two to tango, I must have played a part in what went wrong, etc.

Rather than get cheesed off at well-meaning but completely misinformed generic statements, I decided to put this poem back into general circulation.

It is one I wrote not long after my divorce was finalized, long before I met my current and fabulous wife, when I was still giving my ex the benefit of the doubt, before a long series of machinations, lies, thefts, and other behaviors came to light.

Back when I still regretted my decision to kick her to the curb.

Trust that I no longer feel that way.


I was in the shower, surrounded by steam,
in the warm, impenetrable wet
that I require, when I remembered
the excursion of your hand
on my skin, the idea
of family that you embodied,
the strength of the pull
that brought us together,
still intact,
like a city beneath the earth
that never prospered.

I can still recall the exact moment
when we met,
when we were young,
and so very different.
And I probe that moment
like a child with a lost tooth
until I am exhausted
by what-ifs and might-have-beens.

I watch the moments of ours lives together
take shape as the objects in this house,
and I can feel the fullness
of our time, the orchestration
of our bodies as they cascade
the quiet distillation of your essence,
filling this space with breath
different from my own.

What was and what might have been
evolved into what is.
Changes wrought by actions,
actions brought on by changes,
we each added our own ingredients,
and neither read the recipe.

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