Before you lost what was left
of your mind, did you have any idea
that the scales of betrayal you kept
even with your thumb would tip so far
against you? We tried to recalibrate them
for the rest of your life. No, we truly did!
But the cards you shuffled kept coming
up blank in that nightmare game

of kinship. We’ve seen the documents
with your shaky signature that left you
spinning down your nights alone. We wish
you could have gone home to a hospital bed
in that den of yours, under the tawdry painting
of a big-eyed gaucho and his guitar. (Did you
really like that thing?) You could have had your
black coffee, your chocolate and your talking
birds. Maybe one more Super Bowl Sunday.

Selected byJordan Trethewey
Image credit:Ameer Basheer

Sara Clancy is a Philadelphia transplant to the Southwest.  Her chapbook Ghost Logic won the 2017 Turtle Island Quarterly Editors Choice Award and she is an Associate Editor for Poetry at Good Works Review. Among other places, her poems have appeared in Off the Coast, The Linnet's Wings, Crab Creek Review, The Madison Review, and Verse Wisconsin. She lives in the desert with her husband and daughter, their two dogs a cross-eyed cat and a 24 year old goldfish named Darryl.