The river is edged with ice.
Small colonies of slush float
along its rippled skin.
The grass is all white-tipped
in the morning. It is so cold
couples walk without speaking.
The house smells of spoiled fruit,
hot-house roses standing too long
in stagnant water. I sleep
in your bed, under my grandmother's
comforter. It is hard to stay warm.
Tomorrow I will make your black
bean soup, garnished with green
onions, sour cream, white cheese.
Your great aunt's Roseville vase
will hold new flowers. I'll choose
red and white carnations, pretend
it's spring, listen
for your step on the path.