for S.B.

You still won't look at me:
I feel your gaze slide in passing
move over me;
you can fool yourself for seconds
and small parts
but you still
won't look at me.

Your hair is longer,
your face more wan.
I wonder who she is,
this woman who
touches your lank brown locks,
who strokes your hollow cheeks.

Is she who you think of
when you refuse to look my way?

I'll be baking this year;
I will be in the kitchen
kneading dough
getting flower on my hands
and brown sugar on my lips

and later
when all the guests have gone
when the gluttonous holiday appetite has depleted
I will sit in the kitchen
by the window, drinking port,
and I
will think of you

I want you to know:
I'm not failing chemistry anymore.