J. R. Solonche

The House to Myself This Afternoon

The house to myself this afternoon,
I could go upstairs and lie on my back
in the spare room, on the sofa, my head
on two or three pillows, my legs folded up
with somebody’s book on my knees,
in the sun from my chest up, the book
between the sun and the window shadow,
turning the pages from dark to light,
from light to dark again, the poems passing
thus between my hands from light to dark,
from dark to light, and I could lie there
for two hours or for three hours until the sun
passed altogether out of the window and I was
chest up in cold shadow, but I have done that
already, and it served its purpose,
which was to ease the pain of life, which was
to make death, for two hours or for three hours,
seem no more than a passing of one page
into another page, an easing from light into dark,
from dark into light, a leaving, so I must think
of something else I could do, something other
than this that will likewise serve its purpose,
that will likewise be a passing of a page into a page,
that will likewise be an easing from light to dark
to light, that will likewise be a leaving, a leaving.

J. R. Solonche has been publishing in magazines, journals, and anthologies since the early 70s and is the author of six poetry collections.