TWENTY-THREE

Dear Czesław,
Hard to believe it’s been 12 years,
but listen, hey, Happy Anniversary!
I wasn’t sure about having this letter
printed in The New York Times —
do you still subscribe? — but I didn’t know
how else to reach you. I notice
the obits sometimes look more like
the personal ads, with all their messages
to the departed. I suppose you probably
get the Times online — kind of crushes
my picture of everyone sitting around
in Heaven with the paper open
in front of them — but you might
have the same problem I do — no
delivery to this address. Bummer, huh?
They sell it at Starbucks, but maybe you
don’t have a Starbucks on every corner
or maybe you favor that nitro cold brew
or take your coffee the way they served it
at the Med. I miss the Med, don’t you?
I really just wanted to let you know
I’m thinking of you and I’m glad for all
that “was wild and indecent” in you
— even if you’re not!

© j.i. kleinberg

4 thoughts on “TWENTY-THREE

    1. Thanks. I’ve thought about this a lot — I don’t read all the obits, but I do look at them pretty consistently and read some, and I’ve always found it amusing that people send these messages to their loved ones via the Seattle Times obits. Thanks for the opportunity to flesh out the idea!

  1. I love this poem, Judy. An amazing voice and a wonderful sense of wit:
    “I wasn’t sure about having this letter
    printed in The New York Times —
    do you still subscribe?”

    Bittersweet — in the best of ways. Well done!

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