All that spring I waited
for mail,
riding the city bus for hours
each way to class, then work
and home again to the dreary
apartment where I lived then.
I waited for mail from
out of town friends and
men who didn’t know I was
I waited for mail from another
town or state that said
there might yet be another
chance to live the life
I had intended.

Wild mustard bloomed
in every empty lot across town,
a gift of the rains that flooded
the streets the month before.
I wore a mustard-colored skirt
and sandals that wrapped around
my ankles in my usual custom
of overly wearing the thing
that seems right for the time.

I listened to Blood on the Tracks
and tried to write failed lyrics,
rolling pennies to send applications
for schools that wouldn’t accept me,
a complete waste of time,
but I didn’t know that then.
That’s the problem with all our
solicitations we send out in the
mail, the futility is only apparent
in retrospect.

I waited for a new beginning
and longing to root
without realizing that I already was.

All that spring I waited for mail
walking across town to the p.o. box
all I had then of my own.
that I was.
Remembering /thinking of Faulkner’s
last walk in April, a woman much
younger than himself the last foolish
thing he longed to fling himself at
but she wouldn’t have him. All that spring I waited for mail
that never came.