Ubiquitous laugh.
She stood
next to scrawl marked cat.
Eyes wide like little Earths.
I stood

watched her hug her sprawl with thinning arms,
late fees and lo mein containers for cups.
Boots and a summer dress.
I watched from a distance.
I once came so close to touching her:
felt her breath on my neck
in a sudden instant
like a shiver in the dark that woke me
from the inside
of someone else’s chest.
Something I ignored.

Some planned slouch,
pout with the lashes like street flair,
like gumption matters.
I work for my meals.
Eyes like open palms
begging or slapping or
with me.
I knew her name
before it was some coy brick in a wall.
She had wandering knees and inedible fears
(that means things you can’t imagine swallowing)
a carousing way
about it all.

I stared,
all soft slopes from a distance,
harsh gray eyeliner smudged from the sweat of
trying too hard,
partially parted lips,
glimpse of teeth that grind her dead to sleep,
one dangling finger that pointed to her skin
to remind you how she feels at night
(soft-shelled murder)
and those full moon eyes



“the photograph”



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