Divorce Song

Last week I went to the zoo with your mother.
No one else was involved.

I want to explain myself
when I can be sure you're not listening. Perhaps you could

turn your head? do something impossible with your hands?
If I were to say, so long

as you are distracting yourself,
All the air seems to have left the room, would that mean

I hope you will stop breathing? I am doing something
impossible with my eyes.

Most of the animals were unpleasant,
and we found it easy to talk about you, although at first

we were surrounded by birds—also unpleasant,
but impossible to talk over.

Please, don't stop what you were doing.
I want everything you touch.

— "Divorce Song," by Shane McCrae (from Columbia Poetry Review, no. 19)

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