Cold Tea

George Franklin

The mint tea has grown cold waiting for
Me to drink it. Already, it’s late.
You were writing or translating at
The dining room table. I was here
By the window looking at my face
Reflected in the dark. The dog hears
Something I don’t and wants to go out
To investigate. I pretend not
To notice. It’s been a long week. I
Don’t trust what I read in the papers,
And I’m tired of not being able
To see friends and drink coffee in a
Noisy café. Will there be any
Cafes left by next spring or summer?
The dog has settled down. Whatever
Was moving outside is quiet now.
We can see winter constellations
Again. The Pleiades rise above
The treetops and the shopping mall. Clouds
Move off to the west. I can hear you
Taking a shower, putting on your
Nightgown. You’ve probably already
Plugged in your cellphone and turned back the
Sheets. In Berlin or Paris, people
Are doing the opposite, getting
Up, putting on their clothes, going to
Work or wanting to, checking their
Pockets for mask, cellphone, and car keys,
Their stars all vanished in gray autumn
Light, their lives just as disrupted as
Ours. I turn off the desk lamp and lean
Back in my chair. In the moonlight, I
Spot an opossum on the back fence.
The tea is cold, but it still tastes good

George Franklin is the author of Noise of the World (Sheila-Na-Gig Editions), Travels of the Angel of Sorrow (Blue Cedar Press), Among the Ruins / Entre las ruinas (Katakana Editores), and Traveling for No Good Reason (Sheila-Na-Gig Editions). Individual publications include: Into the Void, The Woven Tale Press Magazine, The Threepenny Review, Salamander, Pedestal Magazine, Cagibi, and The American Journal of Poetry. He practices law in Miami and is the co-translator, along with the author, of Ximena Gómez’s Último día/Last Day (Katakana Editores). His website is

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