Pantoum: Taking Leave by Slack

for T.S.

I really want to keep in touch with you.
Congratulations on your new role.
Let me know your personal address.
Your contributions did not go unnoticed.

Congratulations on your new role.
The time you brought in the big hitters,
your contribution did not go unnoticed.
I liked how we seemed like a team.

The time you brought in the big hitters,
we brought in food and they observed
how we seemed like a team.
You said to say “yes and”, not “yes but”

when we bought their drinks I observed
how careful you were in this,
and said yes to another round but
got them sipping bourbons – expert you were.

How careful, too, you were in praise:
nothing that could have hurt or helped:
slow, shallow sips – expert in not saying
anything, and after a while I wondered

what really could have hurt or helped
me say I want to keep in touch with you
and mean anything, and after awhile I’ve wondered
what you would want with my address.

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