the girl from avenue h

Written by Caleb J. Wilson

 

There's burned up color in her hands

And she carries her eyes in her pockets

I wish I could say what that meant

But her 3AM grin stole my breath

 

She said she loved how the fog looked

Droning on beneath street lights  

While 2000s alt rock spun circles

Around our high, unfulfilled heads

 

After I saw her alone in a sweater

Bottled water turned into hard drugs

The best nights all became mornings

And I lost track of all time

 

Her eyeshadow rests in my minds eye

And her soft skin spreads through my veins

My heart beats all of her diaries today

My breath breaks her oaths tomorrow

 

I'd text her on red afternoons

To ask if she knew where her mind was

At first her reply was just three dots  

Later I wrote down her answer  

 

We grew up too quickly in six ways

But heritage still clings to her fingers

I kiss each ring with my left hand

And wonder how old we could be

 

I wish our lives were in green books

With intricate, soft, ancient binding

And pages that smell like tobacco

That we'd only read in the moonlight

 

If only I'd been between her fingers

When she'd snapped them/became someone else

If only I'd shouted at her mind/eyes

Would she have loved me then?

 

I've pierced her calendar over again

With monologues and cigarettes and half-drugs

Every date bloodied by good times

Memory still serves as our bandage

 

But her back still misses the pavement

And her feet still miss her green shoes

Her lips still miss her Marlboros

And somehow I still miss her too

 

Contact Caleb at calebwilson@mizzou.edu