It is as I step forward
with learned hesitation,
crushing the edges of the ice
with my worn out gym shoes —
my balance in question —

that I recollect
your arm in mine,
your frail smile,
your words to go slow,
my sure-footedness,

my resistance,
your shaky, half-steps,
your pristine Keds
grazing the pavement,
forward it seems
an inch at a time,

the smell of your long beaver coat,
it’s silk fur weaves between my fingers
as you bend into the car —
you turning to your husband
to say you should play more tennis —
your sideways grin.