The Widower
Rachel McKibbens

The refrigerator is now an obscene tombstone,
hums like neon vacancy. The pale sticks of butter
resemble her wrists, the maraschino cherries—
a jar of shrinking hearts.

He presses his thumb into the fingerprint she left
on a block of cheese and remembers her hands;
how they’d trickle over his ribcage like bone spiders
during sex, how they will never hold a child’s hand
while crossing a street.

He can’t look in the freezer where a slice of wedding cake
sulks in the corner like a stopped watch. The clipped
coupons she pinned beneath a magnet won’t save anything.

Next week, the neighbors will complain about the smell
of solid milk. He won’t come to the door to explain to them,
But her lipstick’s on the carton

or how the spoiled eggs, perched in their pink Styrofoam casket,
are waiting to be cracked against the edge of a bowl,
or thrown at God’s front door.

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