REMEMBERING HIM, LONG-HAIRED AND SMOKING IN MY BED, TALKING ABOUT HIS CHILDHOOD DOG DYING AND THE BLACK PLAGUE
His sadness reminded me that flowers
die and that people turn to skeletons.
His sadness fit like a too-big pair of trousers,
looked of old yarn, tasted like oceans
of just-rotten tangerines sitting on
my tongue. It was the music of moving
a chair across the floor, felt forgotten
like a scent I almost knew, unnerving
as a needle-poke to my skin.
It was cold as January. His sadness
covered him like chicken pox and when
I touched his back, it dotted and calloused
us both. Do you itch too? Do you feel the red?
I nodded, said Yes. We laughed under our breaths.
A QUESTION FOR YOU WHO IS:
Do you feel the light-streak glow
the barely warm glisten of winter sun seeping
through your tissue-paper skin and clasping
your fingers until they too are white
as the ice that huddles on the staircase
leading to your front door grasping for
palmfuls of puddled warmth saving
them for the next week of storm and then you
are grasping his deep skin who is
warmer than gleaming winter sun
who is electric-stove burnt orange glow
who is kettle yell who is leather car seats on
a summer day that burn my bare legs who is
some ancestral stay-alive hearth
who is a clasped pale hand who is alstroemeria
bobbing in a half-gone ginger beer bottle who
is wasabi who is huddled bodies who is
not a two-night fuck who is beer-breathed
parables who is height or Haight who is
anything but all the men and boys with
and to whom I’ve lied who is not
the night who is clasped who is skin
who is within whom?
Em Bober is currently a senior studying English Literature and Creative Writing at Central Michigan University. An avid plant enthusiast and lover of all things blueberry, Em is hoping to attend an MFA program in the future. Em has been previously published in Central Review, American Academy of Poets, Porter Gulch Review, and ANGLES. She feels that one of the greatest triumphs in life is sharing art with others.