I’d arrive in time for two
glasses, the first drunk
quickly, the second for
something in the hand.
There’d be a tongue on a wall,
and a mustached Buddha
from telephone books. I
would be not looking for you.
I’d find you scrutinizing
a microscopic slide through
a magnifying lens. I’d sidle:
What do you think? You’d say
We should try again, without
looking up, without a flinch.
I’d come back with I meant
the miniatures. You: Yes. I like them.
And facing me now I’d like
to try again. I might say All right,
and we’d return to the ashen
wasteland, exquisite in its rendering.
Late the night my grandmother died, I dreamed
I walked beneath a pillowed sky alone
through wheat fields quilted white, the fences seams.
I headed for the woods instead of home.
The cold, the light, the late November snow
made ground and sky so bright they hurt my eyes.
Or was it something lost, I didn’t know,
but in the dream I cried, or tried to cry.
I knew I’d never make it to the woods—
I had to catch a boat back to a feast.
Many strangers. Tables laden with food.
I leaned from door to door but didn’t eat.
When I awoke, her absence was a wound
that bloomed inside my chest, and filled the room.
Rain Leaping Up When a Cab Goes Past
Seven Kitchens Press, 2013
Cider Press Review: “As New York Snow”
The Good Men Project: “Unspoken at JFK”
Lambda Literary: “Dance Bar,” “Leavings”
Mayday Magazine: “Company”
“Messages from Howard”
on Lambda Literary
The Tradition, Jericho Brown
Don’t Call Us Dead, Danez Smith
Trouble the Water, Derrick Austin
Collective Brightness: LGBTIQ Poets on Faith, Religion & Spirituality, Kevin Simmonds, ed.