The good times were drunk times,
when your body loosened to a soft chair
and you closed your eyes. Or when we'd rove
bar to bar, clutching cold drinks, out onto
the cobbled streets, our plastic neon go-cups
shaking with ice. We jostled through a holiday crowd,
mummers hurled beads at our feet, the women
on the balconies lifted their shirts
for a handful of coins or souvenir mugs,
for three cheers, for more beer.
Sometimes there was caviar in gold cups;
sometimes your cigarette set the sofa afire—
and when, driving home, the car skidded
lovingly against the bridge's steel girder,
we were still happy drunks, who never saw
the blood, the shattered glass at our feet.
The first pains came slow,
careful needle threading cloth;
then the chronology of labor's absolute path.
She let the doctor, sweat-smeared angel of light,
ease her. He cupped the plastic mask
across her face and when she woke
alone in blood-streaked sheets,
the boy was gone from her body.
She never spoke the word.