He came to me while dusting,
stirring a passage to a past
the color of smooth chocolate,
suspended in sweet uncertainties.
We were in seventh grade, sharing
the same social studies and English
classes. He wore glasses and
gravitas sublime and unknowable.
I wore a nervous smile, fell mute
in his presence. He stayed with
his silence. I clung to my
He is fifty-eight years old in the photo.
His eyes behind the glasses young,
vibrant, his face fuller, offering a wry
smile at my startle to his obituary.