from A Taxonomy of the Space Between Us
Poem With You Drinking A Cup of Coffee
This poem has no occasion.
I edited that out a long time ago.
It, like a body, or like a memory,
has rebuilt itself over time:
each of its component parts
have been exchanged for newer,
more efficient ones, so that now,
when I overhear someone
saying the word “coffee,”
you are drinking a cup of coffee.
Input the output, ad infinitum:
I have become so efficient,
I have even learned
to grieve formulaically,
while the function of your absence
has grown less and less
integral to my algorithm: you
aren’t even you anymore.
First published in New England Review