Barbara Conrad: “This Bed”

This Bed

I’m counting the years I’ve slept 
	in this Charleston four-poster rice bed,
and yes, the men who’ve slept here with me.  

More than five, fewer than a dozen, 
	only two still rooted in regret.  
Even when nights are long and cold,  

I let them simply float above me,
	serene in the ether.
Tonight the room is stuffy enough

to wake me.  I push back the comforter,
	slip off my Smart-wool socks 
to cool my feet.  I roll from side to side, 

soothing my mind with deep breathing
	 and a rhyming game.  
The air chills. I pull up the covers, 
consider how cozy those socks would feel
	if I hadn’t tossed them 
across the floor, too far for me to reach.