The night the wind left you on my doorstep
drenched, shivering with rain and tears
you carried a small brown paper bag
stuffed with toothbrush, underwear,
white silk nightgown
hasty luggage, narrow escape
night flight from a hospital.
Prison you called it
where they put you
because you bought a dog
and maybe a dog was a crazy friend to make
at this precarious point in your life
but did they need to lock you up
without phone, wine, or pills
or your daughters, or me, or
all the hims that haunted your
inability to say no.
The night the wind carried you through my door,
you stood in the middle of the living room
alone you stripped
naked, your wet clothes in a pile at your feet,
you let the nightgown cascade over you
arms above your head as if
standing in a waterfall, as if
you might be cleansed by white silk.
I watched from the doorway. Did you hear
my gasp, know my impotence? The wind
leaving you here tonight to unfurl
your madness, your whispers, you
gliding into your darkness,
sad white sails full.