Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2018  Vol. 17 No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
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As if the nectarine on the counter wasn’t alone
in its bruising. Or the burn on your forearm

hadn’t blistered, now locked up from daylight
for a week. One small turtle in the tidal pool

its life most likely diminishing.
As a child you wanted to keep your sadness

in a shoebox, buried on the hill between oaks,
or was that your happiness? You wanted to keep

the possibility of something more mysterious.
Like string lights between branches,

like one soft-as-rabbit-skull driving glove
splayed amid a dark lawn. The light changing

into linens so the skin can breathe, the map open
and smoothed across the table, fold lines

like new, nameless roads imposed, posturing.
Deciphering desired like stone fruit—

flesh surrounding a pit, some soft conspiracy
to brush with fingerprint dust,

lift a life off its surface with clear adhesive tape.  

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