Snow Storm in Brooklyn
After
by Tony Gloeggler

It’s the night after Christmas
and it’s snowing in Brooklyn
again. The wind’s blowing
harder and flakes are falling
faster than they did 8 years ago.
This time, my phone won’t ring
in the cold cold night, your soft
sleepy voice won’t tempt me
into walking through Kensington,
the only two people sweeping
snow off car hoods, throwing
snowballs as your hair grew
all wet and tangled. No, we won’t
remove our boots in the hall,
sit on the couch kissing
tentatively, make our way
to the bed for the first time.

But if I was tempted to pick
up the phone, I wonder how
long it would take you to recognize
my voice? Would you know me
in one, two, nine syllables
and win the grand prize
chosen especially for you?
Would you remember it at all,
the way you’d walk your dogs
late at night and call hoping
to hear something sweet
and sarcastic before you fell
asleep next to your boyfriend?
If I asked you to go walking,
yes tonight, how many breaths
before you’d recover your
frazzled grace and tell me
it’s too late, too far, to walk
from Austin to Brooklyn?

Is your husband home, down
in the basement, playing
with computers and machines
making music without melodies
or words? I know, I know
you still love Bill. Would you tell me
in a rushed whisper not to call
ever again, click off quickly?
Would you wish me a merry
Christmas, move to another
room, close the door behind
you? Clutch your new daughter
closer, carry her with you
or lay her down in her crib
quietly? Could I forgive you
if you had a Texas accent?
Would it possibly lend
your words a softer sexier
slur, or make them sound
too sweet and too fake?

Would you ask about my writing,
tell me how much you loved
my new book, how the poems
still tear you apart, make you
cry when you read them
late at night and pretend
you’re not the woman
in the ones that hurt the most?
Would you ask about Joshua?
Would your hands move
like giddy fish as you go on
and on about your baby girl?
Could I imagine how deeply
the light in your eyes burn
when you tell me her name?

Would you say something,
anything about how you miss
New York City, how often
you think of me, no matter
how much you want to forget
those three years? Would you
tell the truth or lie, say
you really loved me?
How you hope I’m happy
and I’ve learnt to let go,
that this new year
will be my best ever
when we say goodbye
one more time?

PHOTO: “Snow Storm in Brooklyn” by algernonregla.

tony g

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Tony Gloeggler is a life-long resident of NYC’s boroughs and manages group homes for the developmentally disabled in Brooklyn. His poems have been recently published in The Raleigh Review, Rattle, Chiron Review, Mas Tequila Review, Nerve Cowboy, andPaterson Literary Review. He’s been nominated for Pushcarts a handful of times and would like to know who he needs to talk to to have a chance to actually get one. He has published four collections (One Wish Left/Pavement Saw Press, The Last Lie/NYQ Books, Until the Last Light Leaves/NYQ, and Tony Come Back August — a duo with photographer Marco North — with Bittersweet Editions). The last two books focus on his 35 years working with the developmentally disabled and his connection with the autistic son of an ex-girlfriend.