After Divorce Court

April 14, 2016

I drive west along the black granite bed of Cold River as it sweeps down the mountain. My best friend drives the same road east, the lies his wife told the judge trailing us...

 

I drive west along the black granite bed

of Cold River as it sweeps down the mountain.

My best friend drives the same road east,

the lies his wife told the judge trailing us

like the smell that sticks to your clothes after

anatomy lab. Yet the sky is flawless blue,

an infinite ceiling pilots call “severe clear,”

and I can see contrails above the peaks

where terrorists turned the plane toward New York

as easily as my friend’s wife took their children

under her wing and flew them into her September.

I’m headed home to my wife of forty years,

a woman who has found a way to forgive

my crimes, and I’m hoping the judge could hear

the private vocabulary of deceit and betrayal

cloaked in the crumpled logic of money.

Now this empty road sinks through switchbacks,

distant fields far below plowed chestnut brown,

down through shadow, down to the last bend

before the waterfall, a pair of Canada geese

sifting for food in the only patch of sunlight,

heads bent, paddling hard against the current.

            

Disclosures:

Dr Berlin is Senior Affiliate in Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. E-mail: Richard.Berlin@gmail.com. His most recent collection of poetry, PRACTICE, is published by Brick Road Poetry Press.