Self Portrait at the Readjustment Convention


“Spirits are high as Massey steps off
Clapping big, the way he’s teaching us to clap.”

I cheer as though I’m the one who said something.

It’s not my clothes but my hands that stand apart,
Garden-tool plain, but also delicate as if waiting

For something to hold.
“On the stage, old Massey returning glances,

Faces are in shadow. Hats off. Hats off.”
These prints of my mother’s

I found them in her basement among the dolls
And stickered suitcases and casts.

It is true, about people, even me
Wanting so much to be imaginary.