She waned in the neighborhood of my first love, like some sounds that turn mute in/another language.
She waned in the neighborhood of my first love, like some sounds that turn mute in
another language. My oblivion was not a sign of innocence. I misplaced Rs often and
relied on Ls as on a longer front tooth. Listen. Look. Let me explain. In my memory,
faces kept eroding, became cubist or lost a nose, a mouth. Hate drove her to invisibility.
Some mornings, I’d still find my toothbrush wet. At night, her fingerprints on the pane of
gelatin darkness. Forgotten faces were reduced to vestigial pools that reflected my own.
Through their wet pores I could breathe. Each night was a cube, rearranged once I
entered. She was a tongue stiff as a dictator one moment, a transparent peninsula with
umbilical coordinates the next: Look
how the lights got the tennis elbow from battling with night
after night, this toned streetlight—
When words were too heavy, I’d cup her with my hands.
Some of her dripped on my way to bed.