Looking for something in the Sunday paper,
I flipped by accident through Local Weddings,
Yet missed the photograph until I saw
your name among the headings.
And there you were, looking almost unchanged,
Your hair still long, though now long out of style,
And you still wore that stiff and serious look
You called a smile.
I felt as though we sat there face to face.
My stomach tightened. I read the item through.
It said too much about both families,
Too little about you.
Finished at last, I threw the paper down,
Stung by jealousy, my mind aflame,
Hating this man, this stranger whom you loved,
This printed name.
And yet I clipped it out to put away
Inside a book like something I might use,
A scrap I knew I wouldn't read again
But couldn't bear to lose.
- Dana Gioia