You are the long hour before the alarm and endless
stream of infomercials, the hour I learned
cross-stitching and finally finished Moby-Dick.
You early-riser, late-to-bed, insomnia.
You are a dead-air AM dial, open-mouthed
moaning muffled in the next apartment.
5 a.m., I worry about you, how you'll hold out
on caffeine and red vines as you slow shuffle
through morning breath, short tempers,
and elderly who take up booths in your diners.
Yes, there were times we shared the same
toothbrush. Yes, you once opened me like a book.
But let me say now how much I regret the nights
I spent wandering your empty boulevards
counting every streetlight flitter out,
those few nights that turned to many nights
when I couldn't sleep and your red-eye patrols
and morning editions were all the exercise I had.
You, Central Time, Mountain Time, Too Early.
You, a princess searching for some soporific fruit,
chamomile or hit of Ambien, fearful of the kiss.