All night my dreams snowed letters. Singly
and in sheaves, envelopes fell into my hands,
big manilas and tissue-thin airmails,
some with Chinese script and Chinese stamps.
Pages folded and signed. On red stationery inside
a red envelope, a shout of congratulations.
And me carrying armfuls to the mailbox.
Waking, I wondered at this paper blizzard.
Mid-day I found my forgotten letter
to you in the bottom of my pack, stamped
and addressed, promises
to visit next spring. And now arrives
the call from your wife—your stroke,
your memorial. Ah, god, Michael,
which is worse, a farewell or none at all?