Once upon a time
We were ghosts
draped in human furs and red velvet
to keep ourselves warm.
on either side of town,
using illness as an anchor,
refrigerating whispers before we regret
finally saying something.
I was a grave when I wanted to be
Twirled to the sound of your fluttering lashes:
broken and sloppy,
untimed, the way you glanced
towards me sometimes on street corners.
I could tell by the books you held,
the women you didn’t,
shield of solitude with heavy eye contact,
a light coat and no gloves and no verbal complaint
about the term “addict” being thrust upon us that
you didn’t just act strange–
you possessed it.
Sometime around the reemergence of allergies,
I sniffled patiently, sipped hot water with
lemon and basil.
Someone sang on a makeshift stage of
upside down milk crates.
You looked sidelong, gingerly,
an afterthought that led me here.
I played with my hem and insufferable silence.
You make me feel young, I mouthed
to the ground.
You returned the gesture with a half-cocked grin
that looked rehearsed and returned to
The ground fell away and
I was a picked thorn.
Some perspiring flower,
I knelt in a corner
a stem growing from a red plastic cup
watching the fireworks
knowing this crowd rocked you
|in her drunk cradle.
You walked by with cotton candy
and no one else and
a relentless aposiopesis.
First sight and I’m swallowed,
swollen with ideas of our
Come first light,
I will be buried in drool,
all blue everything
wandering around the whole self centric town
for a chance
to pass you.
Barely a move.
Watch you pass effortlessly
like my continual gap years.
Turning to give each other one last glance
over our now bronzed shoulders.
Adjust my strap so you think about skin
(I’m swimming in it. )
That chilly way we do:
show a little set of teeth and move on
in a pool of cool air and unresolved disorder,
I keep coming back to the idea of first
circling your block,
opening my mouth,
making a statement
you can’t rebuke.
I need that
like a shark needs