(towards the sea), you will pass
13, 14, 15, and then 16 pause:
3 units, top to bottom,
two couples, two babies
and three (sometimes four)
single girls making too much noise
on the second floor: laughing and cooking
and crying and cleaning.
You know, it's funny: when I
remember the space at Atlantic
I picture one small bean
and one tall bean, suffering through
the cold trials of new
adulthood with you
in an apartment in Beverly, Ma.
One rides a bike, strong
and without fear, over the water
into Salem beginning her day with cookies,
soups, vegetables and pre-made entrees.
The smaller bean is waking up,
taking a walk through the living room
to start with coffee and a few lines
of truth - scooting off soon
to the grocer in the next town over,
and starting on those cookies
and soups and pre-made entrees.
And now there you are:
writing it all down in a warehouse
coffee shop far away
in Colorado, feeling the loss of it all -
without regret, but full of understanding
because you cried too much
and too often
because you could not begin
to understand just what it all meant
at the time
because it seemed like you
were destined to start drinking
coffee in the morning
and a cappuccino later in the day
because you moved away
from dirt on your hands
because you just didn't know.
I am heading East on Atlantic.
I will stop at 16 and be glad
for you - the ocean and the trees
and the streets of Beverly are all
glad for you.