I find the Uber before midnight in the too-bright layers of cement and air parking garage.
I am plane-squeezed empty, underslept, zapped in from other coast.
Driver slides us down the highway current.
City approaches. We enter in.
Nearly fourteen years since I’ve been here
where my son was sick before he died,
Where his younger brother, healthy, was born.
It was so long ago that I am not who I was then,
but when the driver carries me up and down these dark streets, light-punched awake,
Bits of that life swim up to greet me:
That small store where their father didn’t speak
while we searched for snacks for cranky boys one sunny afternoon.
The corner at the end of 15th where I walked the stroller
when I needed to get that far from home.
24th where I remember the exact words that took the tension from a certain conversation.
Are memories when they surface still memories or something real?
And that strange ache of how hard it all was and how much we loved each other
the tired now.