New Year’s Eve Women

Photo: Alexandru Vicol. Free use via Unsplash.

Here comes a hummingbird.
See it hover over the patio
near the watching woman whose heart still ticks.
That bird’s heart rate in her own
would be a killer – although in such winged jewels
we call it torpor of near hibernation.

The woman’s heart beats on sofa cushions
where her chambers sip nectar again. She knows
noon sun will melt the frozen liqueur outside,
sweet substitute for what was once a forest.
She would love to hang from eaves
and bask in sun drenched water,
still feels one ventricle’s tight squeeze
as she felt last night not sleeping.

Farther off, across the 520 bridge, there is no patio,
where darkness enfolds the last December day.
Steps lead up to a church gym mezzanine
where twelve women
toast apple cider’s sparkling bubbles
before bedding down on mats when lights go out.

None of the women want to wait up until midnight,
their pancake turner clocks will flip a year of sour syrup
and their mats will wrestle daylight soon enough.
For now, this night’s sleep on makeshift beds is nectar.
Noisy furnace makes a music to cover snoring.
Ribbon-tied scarves of red and blue yarn, greetings
written by school children, and coffee cards on a table
will be tucked inside their rolling satchels in the morning.

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