No one noticed when my heart pissed blood;
my sweater hid the accident, no drips stained your pristine carpet.
I’ve never used a catheter, but these last few weeks
it’s been happening more frequently. First, it was only a drop or two,
then it was maybe a half-cup, now it’s gallons and I get light-headed.
I excuse myself with polite eye-contact, a half-smile, and nod.
In the restroom I use two rolls to clean-up, hiding the soiled tissue
at the bottom of the garbage, change shirts
(I keep spares in all of my close friends’ bathrooms)
and return to the party. No one’s the wiser, they just assume
I drank one-too-many glasses of wine, and made a quiet mess
of my best Christmas sweater. I study your face tipsy. Back and forth,
my mind wanders between blue eyes
and a subtraction problem—the sweaters I have left
minus social engagements we will both be attending. I’ll be fine,at least until the end of January.