The Walking Bone

I knew her back in college
The Walking Bone we called her
anxious sick
starving all the time

still secure in our indecision
we’d stay up late nights debating
which strain hit you harder
over single-serve Kraft mac-and-cheese  

ambitious sharp-witted cloudy-eyed
over all it was a pleasure
to be her acquaintance, as I said in bed
far less than I should have

-God, I still remember the old jokes-
pennies falling out her mouth when she saw me-

but as things go
we became untethered
drifted apart
casualties of time

last I’d heard was she had left some ashram
and was living off 
in the woods of Newfoundland
trying to get sap from a stone

still I keep having this feeling
a shadow or something
even if I keep turning around to empty air
its like any moment

I’m gonna find her beside me again 
beaming glorious mischief
a pile of change at her feet
and held above her head
whatever it was that she was always looking for.

at least just to know someone found it
just to have had it once
close to me

©2023 Niall Cunningham