I am the heir of her things
whether I like it or not.
A half-bottle of coral nail polish,
her toothbrush, the sharp anger
she left hanging about the house.

We are almost out of boxes.
How to pack the Darjeeling perfume,
the blonde hair she bobby-pinned
and curled before suppers.
What red her lips left

on my grandfather’s cheek.
Where do we store the things
we knew and we didn’t know,
like her pleasure? Somewhere,

she is sipping her Cathead Vodka
and slipping out of silk dresses
that I fold into boxes.
This is what death gives

you: a vibrator, a set of green
ceramic birds, the faded pink robe
that she draped by the tub.

Amy Fant