Goodbye 3

Emily Liebowitz

X calls it cowboys, still poor in the herd
but fresh faced & forested, like
everyman in potentia. & if
we wrangled enough influence to call halt,
not lock it up for rationale but rather regulate it

to model for grazing, 
it would leave us a bit starry-eyed,
so less evident to the average eye,
but still visible on the surface, 
enough so that if it or I

were your enemy 
you could point at it 
or me & say,
though difficult at this angle, a real professional, 
an eagle-eyed man, could make this or that shot.

But the terror of singular weather 
(when at lunch we no longer have the difference
between humid & dry heat to discuss) 
or of a simple afternoon making amends or 
how I will stay yours till Niagara Falls,

they all began unremarkably, 
with previous things presumed finished 
or at least facing a wall of advancing flame 
or jumped ahead of & blocked 
forced back to burn up only half a mile away from home. 

So as I have followed it, it is me that is sidelined 
by design or quark landed here, not popular at all.
& in the capitalized relationship
you yourself are away from me.
You might say, “this is in reply to yours” 

or that we relate no longer in momentum. 
That though I am green, 
we are not green alike. 
But in some sort of booklet 
or overheard from a dial’s twist, 

the act of parting politely is called a “favor.” 
Yes, I’ve seen it—but it’s strange & rare. 
Usually the current month can’t be called the instant, 
or the previous month the ultimo. 
In other words, 

it is no wonder man 
that runs down old gravestones 
but the folks that often ask about you, 
Dear Husband, Beloved Brother, 
Dearest Friend, Honored Sir, etc.