That’s Often the Hardest + Diva


That’s Often the Hardest

Now and then I turn a corner in Brooklyn
and I see something lovely.
A cherry blossom, a blush-red brick,
children frolicking and finding something
to fight about. Unsuspecting, I’ll be
wearing my headphones, noise-canceling,
quite loud, listening to Donna Summer. A joy thunderous

will wake me from my wakesleep. A laugh,
a shout, a story told in excitation, coming
from one gleaming face or many with
the amber light of late day making the whole wide earth

look young.


When I see these stirring, affirming things

I cannot help but think you’d love them

were you here to see them, too.

Then I remember that you’re still alive

and all that I must do is call.



I’ve long dreamt of being Beyonce, waking up
to a view of the Alps in a pink silk robe.
I pick up the phone by my bed to let my
stylist know I’m awake to be draped in full glamor.

Traipse along marble floors to a kitchen filled with

peaches just ripe. My children would come greet me,

all smiles, having slept soundly. No radiator hissing

like a violent cat to keep them up at night.

I’ve long dreamt of the gas tank always full and
a driveway so that I never have to circle the block.
A pool when I need to cool off. A chef when I don’t want to cook.

But most of all, I want to sing
like someone beloved
in an outfit like a hymn.
To have people who love me
cheer just for standing before them.

To be celebrated. To be queen.


And after all that, I’d get to fall asleep
right when I lie down. That’s what I imagine it’s like.