The Breakfast Room

The crystal jar becomes more
interesting to him every day. Sleep
erases cause, not effect. I realize

this over breakfast, where she
sits in pastel shadow, half-
dressed, aware that even sunlight

cannot crack the lines of her face. By
now, there are just two things left
for him to know: One, that on so many

mornings, this glass imparts its shine to his
wife’s familiar tears.  Two, that its fragile
body is more yielding than her own. Walls

are thicker than paper, and paper is
thicker than words. I learned to read
on these very walls, their stories

occupy my thoughts more faithfully
than mother occupies the third chair.
Sleep erases cause, not effect.