in memory of Dean Kostos
Appetites, ambitions, disappointments: luxurious swags of velvet and brocade drape themselves over essential bone. But in time the ornamentation dwindles.
The decorations thin and fall away and the shape emerges of what was always there. Now that you will write no more poems,
that early lavishness, that ardent accumulation of the gorgeous no longer looks like a single stitch too much, not one sequin, feather, streak of color.
Everything being finite, how much, Dean, could ever be too much? Who would want to live without the beauty? Think of honey drizzled over a slice of bread
so thickly it is dripping sticky and lickable onto your finger. Then little by little the drizzle dwindles to one gleaming golden thread.
Only the faintest savor of honey lingers, less taste than a sensation and a scent, a phantom scent, a memory of taste and then a memory of a memory.
Those sesame seeds, that fragrant crust: all memory. And poetry is bread, is nourishment, community, delight, and this you understood
from the beginning to the end of what you had to give us, and we were fed, and we are fed.