It’s the last October and I can’t help
thinking about the first October. I was
wearing this same brown leather jacket—
I’d found it that fall in my father’s basement.
He wore it when I was a kid, walking around
Allen Park, smoking cherry tobacco in a pipe
he probably inherited from someone I never knew,
maybe my Great Uncle Cook or Great Uncle Alvie.
One night in Dearborn, you laughed at how a pin
on this jacket’s lapel said “Browns”—and I still
haven’t figured out why you laughed. And maybe
it means something that I never tried to figure it out.
I guess at some point we all kind of give up on trying
to figure things out, and at that point, we may as well
laugh, like you laughed that night, the cafe so alive
with us that there was a dense fog on the windows.