Restricted Parking

Daniel Becker

In silhouette, in pantomime, in slow motion,
she’s dropping him off, but instead of 

a see-you-later kiss, they slap palms, high fives,
except they miss–

twice the sound of one hand clapping–
and there they go again: arms raised, hands poised,

holding then un-holding their applause
as they deliver unto one another. Meanwhile, 

that’s my space they linger over.
A kiss is just a kiss, but this

is a circuit to complete, an orbit to repeat, 
a moment that needs time

the way a couplet needs to rhyme. 
Parting is to parking as sweet sorrow is to sour, 

and more so–trust me–if they’re here tomorrow. 

About the poet:

Daniel Becker practices and teaches internal medicine at the University of Virginia School of Medicine where, he says, “I am one of the few faculty who can’t complain about parking. I have a primo space.” 

About the poem:

“I have a soft spot for wives dropping husbands off, husbands dropping wives off and partners dropping partners off, and for that moment of separation, so ripe with promise.”

Poetry editors:

Judy Schaefer and Johanna Shapiro

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