The Muse must be in Miami,
drinking sweet tough coffee in a Cuban café,
laughing when a rat scurries across the sidewalk,
listening to the brown-legged mothers scold.
She must be spending afternoons walking
where the água meets the blanca,
watching one porpoise cruising,
one small airplane dragging its ad,
one plump woman airing her tits in the sun.
Evenings she goes to the Italian Restaurant
where three waiters in tight black pants
attend to her.
They offer soft ripe cheeses and red wine,
lightly brush her shoulder when they pass,
tell her the tiramisu was made just for her.
When they bring the bill, they touch
her sunburned hand, sigh when she rises to go.
They promise her
they’ll count the moments till she comes again.
ELLEN LAFORGE/GROLIER POETRY PRIZE RUNNER UP, 2007