Love Poem VI

by Tim Gavin

When you couldn’t bend and each

Movement your pain spiked, I tied

Your shoes and emptied the dishwasher

And served stew and soup and mashed

Potatoes the way you like them with red skins.

It’s all part of the mix; each time—you felt guilty—each time

I spent hours away for the office and bathed you

In soapy water and combed your hair

And dressed you as if we made reservations

To our favorite restaurant—you know the one

With paintings of dogs and the k-nine motif;

And we played music—your favorite country artists

Strumming ballads in the back

Of the pick-up trucks after shooting darts

And drinking shots and square dancing

To the live band but out of step to their rhythm

And we laughed with the howling dogs.