Feeling Her Pain

It’s the tip
of hatred brushing my back,
fingernails dirty
with the film
of barroom floors,
(open mics
where no one cares
what you’re reading
if you have nice tits)
and the frantic loneliness
of masturbation.

It’s the frustrated whoosh
of a scream on my neck,
(her breath,
Reeser’s potato salad,
fried chicken
and cigarettes)
unheard, or barely
audible. The howl
of the dead to the living,
rustling a curtain
stirring a tree branch.

Outside, the sky
alternates, blue,
to grey, rain
to sun. The weather
undulates, pushing clouds,
lighting leaves
on fire. It’s cold
then warm, then cold
again.

He wraps his arm
around me, pulls his
massive coat across my
shoulders, and we
walk along
the river
beneath
the Hawthorne Bridge.


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