It is the fear of death that drives
me to squeeze the ink out of this pen;
otherwise, I would not be here
writing in a crowded coffee shop.
(It is very unusual for a man to die
in a coffee shop.)
I’ve been coming here to write
as often as I can.
The waitress knows my name.
The first sentence I ever wrote
(without being told to write)
was a secret and a silent declaration
A childish sentence on a piece of paper
composed of three words.
I hid it under the mattress.
I was thirteen or fourteen years old.
Why I wrote “I love N—-”
on that silly piece of paper
with a fountain pen
I must go back in time to find out.