Dear Francis, I don’t want anyone elseI love to die so I arrange daisiesand fiddleheads in a blue vase.The ferns unscroll their frondsin light and water. They twist ugly.O dear effort. O small joyto find mail out front. Addressedto former tenants or “Current Resident.”Any brief connectioneven if the name’s not mine.We sleep in on Sundays.Practice vocabulary in Italian and French.If we get there, may we know enoughwords and idioms. The right waysto be lost. The best cathedralsand saint names. Names I wrote in classeswhen all I knew of evil was a cartoon devilcalling up more devils from cragsand deep splits in the earth.I did not confirm—no stack of palesparkling cards, checks folded inside,no sheet cake from Wegmans,a sugar lamb, gentle and meek,resting in a buttercream field—but I know how to ask for help and mean it.May we know divine light or the soundthat startles the cats awake each morning—the furnace coming on, a neighborleaving for work, the dogdragging a bone across the floor.May people believe our shouldersare filled with light,even though we do not smile.We bring beer and planets, a spidershook from an eyelet curtainfor luck or love, reasons to stay in bed.Let’s pretend we do not see the first treeto turn red. Put the treeon a make believe mountain.Put the mountain in a make believe forestbeneath a sky heaped like grey silk.Impatient traffic beneath the soft awning.I like to think of us as a red signon the road, a less severe instructionpainted across the middle.Each day the furnace hums pinkwaking lullabies. A rope fallsfrom the ceiling above our mattress.We must learn to live with this rope,follow the fall. On ambitious days,we trace its path with our fingers.The gesture, its own enormous grief.Any zigzag pattern will do.I am saying this whole thingis a prayer to end the sadness.I am marveling at each texture.How does everything know to come on?May it all keep coming on.May the lampposts—scrolled in designand work—always believe in nightand night and sidewalks and more night.