Potholes

Marjorie Power

These are different potholes than we used to dodge on Tuesday
evenings. Our tango lesson has changed locations. Isabella
purchased an enormous dance hall. She’s smitten with its wavy old
mirrors, their gilded frames carved with branches, leaves, birds,
flowers. The place reminds her of milongas in Buenos Aires, her
home town.

Our car bumps though the mission district, though it’s not called
that, not called anything. Dusk means shelters are about to open.
Back packs, cardboard boxes, sleeping bags, wheelchairs, tents,
conversations and puffs of smoke spill over the sidewalks.

We cross a long bridge. The arterial changes its name.

I miss the mirror Isabella had at her small studio, a wide spread of
frameless glass that accurately reflected our movements.

We pass a full parking lot belonging to the restaurant that serves
old rumors about the Mafia. Half a block from Isabella’s we find
an empty space by the dust-colored house — sunken steps, their
paint mostly gone. Drawn blinds. A padlock.

dried leaves skitter past
a paper shred held motionless
by hyacinth blooms



 

Marjorie Power's poetry collection, Seven Parts Woman, was published in September, 2016 by WordTech Editions. Her poems also appear in six chapbooks and one other full length collection, all from small presses in the U.S. Many journals and anthologies include her work: The California Quarterly, Pinyon, Main Street Rag, Trajectory, A Song for Occupations: Poems About the American Way of Work, The Random House Treasury of Light Verse, and others. She lives in Denver, Colorado with her husband, after many years in the Northwest.

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