Watching My Reflection in the Window in the Library.


Every time I got to the library (on the fifth floor)
I end up having to go to the bathroom
and I walk past the section of books
I used to organize
for six-seventy-five an hour
the first year I was here.
I run my fingers along the unloved spines of each thinking
"my section"

It's still mine―
even though I was assigned a new section
of law books, then I quit―
still mine.
Each dusty book on artisanry and textiles
was held in my hands carefully
(some were so old they might crumble into dust)
and I read almost all of them
because the library was my home.

Today, I said to my friend
that none of our friends have any depth
and he said
"Yeah, that's what I meant when I said they're shallow."
But I meant all of them
and he meant the younger ones.

So I go back to the library
because it was my home
before I met all of them, when I had no friends here.
I want to make it home again,
I want to watch the seagulls and pigeons huddle on the ledges;
I want to watch the rain come down from the roof in sad waterfalls;
I want to listen to the flies smashing themselves against the window;
I want to see my ghost of a reflection in the windows over the amphitheater;

but they're all gone
even though they're here,

because every word I've written this semester
has changed my insides in some subtle way
that leaves me choking for meaning,
for a connection,
that I don't think I'll ever find.