Is This a Good Time?

I look out the window
At the last moments
Of the last moments
Of the day,
When streetlamps get the idea it’s dark,
And hound dogs bark when they’re put out to stay,
And Mom calls to ask,
“Is this a good time?”

And I say what I always say,
“It’s always a good time, Mom.”
Though Mom doesn’t really call
Since she passed away.

But now would be a good time, Mom.
Ideal.
You must have news—it’s been years.
Even no news would reveal so much,
If you would reach out and touch me here
In my living room lit by a streetlamp in the dark
Listening to the neighbor’s dog’s lonely bark—
No?

Is this a good time? I ask the night.
Is this a good time?
“Don’t bother,” the dog bays,
“The night never answers.
“The night never cares.
“Only the moon rises.”
Howl.