In the place in the brain that handles names,
Hannibal, Hannaleah, Atlee Hammacher,
the names are beginning to disappear, slowly.
Kissinger is still there, with Joyce Brothers and Idi Amin,
but my friends' relatives' names pop in and out
along with my sister-in-law's maiden name,
my sixth grade teacher,
my first boss.
Some of my former lovers' last names are gone,
last time I checked all the first names were still there,
but no dates.
Fellows I went on dates with are also gone.
The room in the brain that handles names is airy,
breezy, the wind wanders through
ruffling the papers stacked on ancient card tables.
Use rocks, they say,
so I am looking for rocks to weight them down.
Impossible to meet anyone here,
so nice to see you,
I know you, I knew you,
once even I was in love with you,
I have an idea,
we will be like Brando and Schneider,
we will do it without touching, without names.
Copyright 2000 Sharon Olson
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