LONELINESS

Matthew Lippman

The one thing you will miss when you are dead 

is the music of Pat Metheny. That you will never get to listen to 


“San Lorenzo” on your bed, balling your face off 

like when your lover leaves you 


for another lover and you swear to God believe 

there will never be any more love to have 

between yourself and another lover 


down the river 


whose name might be Barb. 

Sometimes you get fired from a job 

that you’ve worked at for 24 years 


but when you go home you can still put on Travels and get the fuck out of Dodge 

in your mind 


like that time you went to Cleveland and the snow was very dirty. 


When you are dead Pat Metheny’s “As Falls Wichita Falls” will still be played 

somewhere in Detroit or Los Angeles 


by a 20-year-old who has just discovered her heart 

is a snow globe 


dropped onto Ventura Blvd before rush hour. 

It won’t have anything to do with you. 


You will be dead 


and Lyle Mays’ piano will drift in and out of the parked cars 

for anyone who ever knew how to get undressed under the Missouri Sky 

at midnight 


before the locust showed up. 


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Matthew Lippman’s collection Mesmerizingly Sadly Beautiful (2020) is published by Four Way Books. It was the recipient of the 2018 Levis Prize. His next collection, We Are Sleeping With Our Sneakers On, will be published by Four Way Books in 2024.