Incident in an
Apartment Complex:
A Suite of Voices
Incident in an Apartment Complex - Peter
Featured Poem: "The Widow"

The Widow

 

   

How many times did I beg Enrique,

think about your children, your three little ones,

if you don’t intend to consider me.

 

But he loved to ride along with his friend!

On his back beneath some sweating belly

of a car, all day I know he dreamed of it:

 

the uniform, the badge, just like Carlos.

So every other Monday night, he’d take

shotgun in his buddy’s cruiser, and leave me

 

sleepless in the dark.  “Luisa,” he told me

just days before, “I’m going to sell the shop.”

And I knew he was serious, by how

 

happy he looked.  But I never knew where

that feeling came from: the adrenaline

of the radio crackling, blue light pulsing?

 

On weekends, the hours spent inside the hood

of Carlos’s car, the two of them pausing

with beers: could it have been companionship,

 

something he didn’t even find with me?

And now Carlos denies that Enrique

was even a passenger with him that night!

 

To which I ask: how does Carlos explain

his ending up in the wet grass?  How it was

we couldn’t even have an open casket?

 

Was my husband simply following Carlos

like some ghost, as perhaps he follows him now?

They pulled down the sheet and I made my I.D.,

 

the way that, early mornings, I would ease

the covers down when he returned to me,

not long before the children awakened.