I wonder how many sandwiches
Slid down the counter
in the midst of a conversation
That meant the birth of a child,
the loser meeting the winner,
the beginning of a job,
the end of a career.
I think of Studs
combing back his hair in the mirror.
I wonder what he preferred.
Italian beef, Turkey, an all beef hot dog.
Maybe a taco or a latke, instead.
Was he on the wall at Manny's Deli
with Jim McMahon? Nah.
He had more important things to do.
I imagine the best sandwich Studs ever ate
was served to him
in a simple apartment,
smoke from a cigarette hanging in the air
with the static of the tape rolling,
by a tough-handed woman
on stale bread, with a bit of government cheese
maybe some bologna and bright yellow mustard
And he savored its separate parts quietly
as she told him everything.