The party was impenetrably
loud and in motion.

A while later, the rooms thinned.
It started to snow. A train

roared past like a redaction.
The great writer played his stereo low,

and I sat on the couch
between two aging professors

and pretended to know who he was playing.
It became clear to me

he was as weak and terrified as anyone.
When it was just the two of us,

he took down some brandy
and offered the spare room. Now wind

drags over this house
he must have left while I was sleeping—

where I’ve woken to find myself alone
with all his things.