Valediction for an ex-girlfriend
My mother called on a Sunday,
told me you were gone.
She didn't know much more.
I knew what you told me on Facebook.
The bad marriage and divorce,
the older guy who got you hooked
on drugs, the bulimia,
the pictures you posted online,
gaunt, bony and frail.
It wasn't the same girl I dated,
but you were smiling. Somehow,
after everything your 35 year old
body endured, you managed to smile.
You had a husband who treated you well,
you'd just gotten a new cat.
You also kept throwing up.
It had to be what finally beat you,
the last strain on a fragile ecosystem.
I want you to know that I let go of
that bitterness some years ago,
that I had a fight with my wife over
being in contact with you again.
After I hung up the phone with my mother,
I asked my wife if I should feel sad.
I think I finally do, Jessica.