I wake to candles burning
and a third bottle of Portuguese red
that I don't remember opening
keeping guard from the nightstand.
She lies naked under bedclothes
on the side of the mattress that's typically mine
while I fumble in the 5 a.m. darkness
for my denim attire.
The notion of leaving
this warm place for work
I lace my boots dizzily
and creep back into the bedroom
blowing out the final flame
before kissing her mass of hair
that conceals her face from sight.
You know what my versions
of Hell are by now.
Now let me tell you
what Paradise could be:
Five more minutes spent
in places like that bed
and a chance to address
a list of things I almost did.