My alternate reality is relatively bland:
The children’s dad and I did not divorce.
He drove me to distraction with attempts to read my hand
to make me happy – strategy of course
that’s guaranteed to wreck a couple’s pilgrimage to love,
for whether it’s the whole or parts preferred,
of qualities that make a marriage sound, the thing above
all else is two – a solo act’s absurd.

I didn’t have a partner, for my husband played a slave –
the long- and short-range plans were up to me.
Eventually I stopped complaining, let the man behave
and fade away in his passivity:
unmotivated, anxious, boring, mad,
but probably a more attentive dad.

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