Chana Bloch

Twenty-Fourth Anniversary

I hung my wedding dress 
in the attic. I had a woolen 
shoulder to lean against,  
a wake-up kiss, plush words 
I loved to stroke:
My husband. We. 

You hung the portraits of your great- 
grandparents from Stuttgart
over the sofa: boiled collar,  
fashionable shawl. The yellow	 
shellac of marriage 			 	 
coats our faces too. 		 	 

We're like the neoclassical facade 
on a post office. Every small town 
has such a building.
Pillars forget they used to be 		 
tree trunks, their sap congealed 	 

into staying put. I can feel it  					 
happening in every cell—that gradual 
cooling and drying. 
There is that other law of nature 
which lets the dead thing stand.