The Love Stories and Tragedies of Trash

Swept up in the last row of the balcony of an old movie palace with crushed red velvet chairs:

• one crumbled ticket for Gone in 60 Seconds,

• a golden tub with unspoken kernels

and a hole big enough for the popcorn trick,

• three invisible blonde hairs from a future wife.

Thrown away from the backseat of a screaming yellow taxi:

• the left corner piece of an hand printed

Our House poster held at a Antonio Delgado

swearing in rally,

• a cocktail napkin with vibrant lipstick smears

from Snapper Magee’s,

• the hardened remains of a McFlurry with nuts

dribbled from fingers kissed.

Tossed in with the other drawstring containers in a green curbside bin in front of the family house for Eileen:

• the price tag for a Blue Nile Studio

Petite French Pavé Crown

Diamond Engagement Ring

in Platinum and another for

• a Cowboy wedding band,

• seven revised proposals

written on a yellow legal pad,

• two more on what to say to her father.

Discarded in the same bin nine months later:

• the unwoven knittings of an Afghanistan war widow— scarves, gloves, a camouflage hat with pom-poms.

Found in the dumpster of the Royal Pavillon Wedding Hall after the nuptials of Frank and Jane:

• a wedding program printed

on aged-look parchment,

• the crumbles of a three tier wedding cake-

the first layer tiramisu,

the second white chocolate mousse,

the third a carrot cake without walnuts

for the food allergen prone,

• monogrammed napkins with

FM/JO printed in baby’s breaths blue

in the right hand corner,

• the broken heel of

an imitation Manolo Blahnik,

• the wilting petals of red roses and dahlias.

Found covered up in baby shower wrapping paper left at the curb of Jane and Frank’s House:

• a paint sample card

with five shades of little blue,

• a lab report with a positive diagnosis,

• a broken rattle,

• a pacifier with a torn nipple,

• a dirty diaper,

• a mother’s tears in a folded napkin,

• a father’s regretful words

buried deep on a thumbnail drive.

Among the detritus of their house with a FOR SALE sign:

• The unneeded gem paper clip

after the dissolution papers

had been stapled and signed,

• five forgive me reminders

written on 3×5 index cards,

• a yellow post-it note with NEVER!

written on top of them,

• all their photo albums

enshrouded in vellum binders.

Noticed in the elevated trash bins at the cemetery where Jane is to be buried:

• the printed out e-mail excuses

for those who heard but

were too busy to come,

• the dirt off the hands

of those who did,

• the soiled paper plates of

those who ate at the wake.

The things left behind at Frank’s potter’s funeral:

• no one,

• nothing,

• not a thing.