The Next One

Ginger, what I knew the other morning,
as if it were written on my closet door,
was that you were the next one after me.

One afternoon, sitting on a little hill
outside the church, I seethed as he
paid attention to you. I didn’t know

I had grievances other than
being passed over, discarded—
I couldn’t save either of us,

from what had ended,
world without end, amen
from what was beginning

I’m going to call you Ginger
, he said

on the hill

I’m sorry it took me a few years to tell—
a few years after you needed me to,

Virginia.

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