The aged regulars remind you of rowers,
raising their spoons as if they weighed the same as oars
from bowls of matzo ball and split pea soup,
lowering them as, measured by the mouthful and the hour,
they slip towards waters deep and then deeper,
while the girl across from you describes to her lover
how, every year on his anniversary, she pours
a can of Budweiser over her uncle’s grave,
not out of anger, but because that’s how
she remembers him, and how she thinks he’d want
to be remembered—cold aluminum and the hiss of beer
off grass, a made up prayer, the words, the gesture
disappearing into the earth and air of their own making.
She raises and then lowers her coffee cup.
The waiter asks if she would like the check.