I’ve Lost Your Name
by Michael Minassian

I’ve searched my notebooks & journals
from that summer in England,
surprised your name does not appear anywhere.

At the top of each page
I had noted the date & time
but soon abandoned commenting
on the weather or affairs
of the heart both real & imagined.

I remember the night you & I
sat next to each other
in the tiny theatre along the bank
of the Cam river; you pressed your leg
against my thigh while we watched
an experimental troupe butcher Macbeth —
two actors playing all the roles.

On the walk home, we exchanged
stories punctuated with long pauses
like a string of commas
hidden in some alternate text;
later, you told me about
your dead father & the sister he damaged
beyond repair, you said, then squeezed
my hand, & let go, running up the stairs.

In the morning, you were gone;
piled up on your bed were your copies
of Dante & Shakespeare; the note I wrote
inviting you to the play pressed
between them like the border
to a foreign country not found on any map.

PHOTO: Self-portrait of author in Cambridge, England (1996).


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Michael Minnasian’s poems have appeared recently in such journals as The Broken Plate, Exit 7, The Meadow, Redactions, and Third Wednesday. He is also a Contributing Editor for Verse-Virtual, an online magazine. Amsterdam Press published a chapbook of his poems entitled The Arboriculturist in 2010.