—in memory of Margaret Pinhey

I was the roof
over her head

the address where friends and family came
to say good-bye
on the first day of what they call
falling back
into Pacific Standard Time.
The early November afternoon light
was already fading at 2:00
and even though it was in the 90s
no one wanted to be inside.
They sat on shaded terraces
looking over
staring at me
used to seeing her appear
at my sliding door off the kitchen
asking who’s ready for dessert
or needs more wine.

All they saw was a single cloud
reflected on glass
inching west.

It must have been hard for them
knowing they’d make that journey too
but not knowing when—
maybe harder for me.
Four years later now
day or night, all I do
is look outside
at every cloud
passing by
reminding me

there’s no such thing
as falling back
into time.