Issue 4
The After Party

The After Party

In the morning
I am the rain’s boots
Your mother folded over
I lost your sister’s silver umbrella
Someone left birthday cake
In the backseat
I was the torn dish of milk
The car did a splash dance
It is always someone’s birthday
Somewhere, if you count backwards from ten
You’ll have time to sweep away the confetti
There is nothing like that everything
That collects after the party
The tired sink full of laughter,
That piled thing that is what you had on
How the rain wore out its welcome
Staying on past Tuesday
And the floor ignored the table
The bowl asking the fork
There was spilled merriment on the deck
The eye asked the death
For permission to land
On the roof, there was an everything
Inside every nothing and you danced

Elizabeth Cohen is a professor of English at SUNY Plattsburgh and the editor of Saranac Review. She is the author of eight books, five of them poetry, including, most recently, Bird Light (2017) and The Patron Saint of Cauliflower (2018). She lives in upstate New York.