by Martina Reisz Newberry

Could it get any quieter? A silence
so profound, a stillness in the atmosphere,
a vacuum opening to swallow
my atonement—space where there is no sound;
you put my pleas there.
I whispered forgive me
every time I passed you in
You’ve dismissed me, darling.
You don’t think I realize it, but,
forgive me,
I know abandonment when it is present;
its silence is deafening.