It was a birthday gift, sent alone
the day before your heart leaves
for a place that’s safer—a book
on travel, what to listen for, by yourself
in walls that let you look back
while your shadow is taken away
—it’s too soon! the ribbon is still splendid
will spend the night the way a sailor
learns to tie huge sails between each arm
stretch out, not yet rope, clinging to a sea
from a boat that’s lost, is closing
while you embrace the dark gray pages.
Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The Gibson Poems published by Cholla Needles Arts & Literary Library, 2019. For more information including free e-books and his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website. Watch a 1994 interview with Simon Perchik.
[image: Book Sculpture: Drowning From Obsession | Thomas Wightman]