42 Readings


Sometimes the sky is a deep purple
with a thick streak of pink through the middle.
And the highway is a gold chain
you’ve snaked across some wood grain
in the shape of a river.

Sometimes you’re driven up out of the valley
and you swear, just for a moment,
you see the northern lights. But that thin layer of orange
is just some factory parking lot, burning it’s reflection
into the fog.

Which reminds you of failure. Yours, specifically.
And how it brought you here. And here reminds you, still, of her,
the soft, peach-like skin of her neck. And this,
how you used to drag the skin from peaches, but now
you eat them whole, so there’s nothing wasted anymore.

Sometimes you bury the pits in your backyard
because nobody’s watching. You imagine you are filling the soil
with burned out stars. You tamp down constellations
with the palms of your hands. It gets to bright sometimes
it makes you nauseous, which reminds you of what you’ve done.

Sometimes things get broken, she said. Sometimes a car wrecks
on the side of the road and your father sees it and says to you,
My god, be careful out here.
And you try. You try for as long as you can.
Posted 05/10/17
Previously published in Sugar House Review and Grist.
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