…Waits

She sat in a wheelbarrow, waiting.

In the outfield, you stared at the sky.

Something would strike—
a summer squall,
a baseball spinning astray.

Teachers spoke in cloaked poetry,
metaphors cast her as enemy,

her stomach stretched with
the oncoming storm.
Her naked navel, a collapsing star.

One swollen eye
staring,
saw neither side
yet sensed,
like searching hands,
what lay

above,

beneath,

beyond,

below,

all we were supposed to know.

For our questions
we were told instead
to read of Io.

How she grew

consumed by clouds
that surrounded her.

And she sat in a wheelbarrow,

waiting.

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Cinder Song

I sat on the floor, in a sea made of paper

It might’ve been Christmas or April exams

My feet they were cold and hands they were numb

I wished that my blood could warm on command

But never, love, and never mind,

Collect the kindling,

Well, who has the time?

Because fire can’t start in a damp and dark heart

So I tipped the candle to light up the room

Imitation of life, it took to dancing,

Curling its skirts as it swept through the gloom

I heard hands on the door, were they pounding for more?

Broken words burning through, saying,

“help, be here soon”

But forever, love, is ever unkind

Long sleeves in summer

To hide what reminds

Of cinder songs, just ash all along

Shallow whispers from wood

And the match that withstood the flame

Are all that remain.

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