The Complete Poems of John Keats
The shipping cost more than the book
with all the poems, less and great,
the odes and their veiled goddesses,
sorrow glutted on a morning rose.
Inside the front cover was a handwritten note—
a woman planned to meet a man
for the first time, directions to the off-ramp,
the coffee shop spelled out in a careful hand.
Did they meet? Did they fall in love?
Was she crushed by a first impression,
how he talked while eating his scone?
Did she see the scar above his eye,
were his eyes deep blue, piercing
the last wall she’d built around
herself, the room where she hid
with her favorite poems, a potted plant?
I see them at the table, sitting with two
double lattes, hopeful with all the hope
a first date allows, frozen like figures
on an urn, forever young.
About the Author
William Miller is the author of twelve award-winning children’s books, a mystery novel, and eight collections of poetry. His most recent poetry collection is The Crow Flew Between Us (Kelsay Books, 2019). His poems have appeared in The Penn Review, The Southern Review, Shenandoah, Prairie Schooner, West Branch, and Folio. He lives and writes in the French Quarter of New Orleans.