I’ve hung on to what’s left over –
what you touched, what fed you,

taken stock of the refrigerator’s gelid interior,
sought evidence you were here.

Behind the yellow mustard,
and a half-squeezed tube of disappointment,

that Tiger Sauce you loved.
Best Before: Sept. 2007.

Some things I needed to keep.

Today, in the mail, an invitation.
Your Amy is getting married in the fall.

You’ll be gone eleven years.

Who invites the dead fiancé’s mother to her wedding?

She must have weighed the pros and cons as I do,
afraid I’ll put a damper on the day for those who knew you,

and burden those who ask: And how do you know the bride?

Afraid she’ll hurt if I don’t show.
Afraid she’ll hurt if I do.

I search online for the perfect gift,
compose my best excuse.

Tonight, I’ll make French onion soup (your favorite),
globules of butterfat dancing on its surface,

like I would have danced at your wedding.


Published in Diode, July, 2018

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Poet and photographer ALEXIS RHONE FANCHER has work published in over 200 literary magazines, journals, and anthologies, including Best American Poetry, Rattle, Hobart, Verse Daily, The MacGuffin, Plume, Duende, Tinderbox, Diode, Nashville Review, Rust + Moth, Nasty Women Poets, Wide Awake: Poets of Los Angeles and Beyond, among others. Her photographs have been published worldwide, including the cover of Witness and Pithead Chapel, and a five-page spread in River Styx. Her books include: How I Lost My Virginity to Michael Cohen & other heart stab poems, Enter Here, and the autobiographical, Junkie Wife. Her chapbook, State of Grace: The Joshua Elegies was released in 2015, and its companion, The Dead Kid Poems, published in May, 2019. EROTIC, a volume of her new and selected erotica, will be published in 2020 by New York Quarterly. A nominee of multiple Pushcart Prize, Best Small Fictions, Best Micro-fiction, and Best of the Net awards, Alexis is poetry editor of Cultural Weekly. She and her husband live 20 miles outside of Los Angeles, in a small beach community overlooking the Pacific Ocean. They have an extraordinary view.

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