To a cat in a cul-de-sac,
she's a stone rose,
malaise with no remorse and a penchant for suicidal grammar.
Backsassing and backroom massaging
her way from Tanner, Illinois to Irving, Texas --
her interstate veins and her data plan brain
catered to the orifices of the weary,
and soothed the spidertongued and sleepy.
In the last postcard, she signed Evangeline,
the number of name changes: 23
in the Sunflower State alone.
A dive bar in Ulysses, Kansas
beamed as a brilliant model of
"Starved wives and stray dogs," Evangeline explained.
"I found the dark side of beet farmers
and the redemption in callused hands."
A letter came from Pryor, Oklahoma:
"Recognize the perfume?"
The only line.
Printer paper close, inhale --
my mind drifts to my former
high cheekbone'd bride, Skye.
Evangeline bedded her spindly body.
Spite, spite, spite.
Confused, I answered her call on the
first morning of December.
Tent living with a retired acrobat on
the growing shoreline of Lake Texoma,
she downed a mixed bag of his sleeping meds,
and sleeping by his side, she fantasized about me.
"I think you drank too much in my dreams.
I woke up dissatisfied."
Once she arrived in Irving, I mailed her
my edit of her suicide note.
A call to say it looked good,
and she'd let me know if she ever had
to use it.
I never heard from her again.