You knew something was wrong when he hesitated by the graves.
Had those cliffs and waves been seen by one before?
The faded lipstick stains on the wineglass you held,
secondhand nightgowns in your closet, the musk in the shoes,
Her echoes in the chamber, the courtyard, your bedroom at night
chilled by the coldness of your sheets from when her spirit left.
Gone but loved, disappeared, but everpresent —
The spectators, their glances brush over you like fingertips,
you see yourself in the still of their pauses
like a subject unfinished, a novel they wish to see the end of.
You think you see her in the mirrors at night, have you gone mad?
Haunted by a crime you never committed, but by your own existence, place, and time
Wonder if it’s really better —
to be the second Mrs. De Winter than none?
This poem is included in The Sophomore Year Experience poetry compilation.