Thursday, August 12, 2010


Smashed ice in a waxed paper cup.
One translucent pea hen flowing after
another, or an orange shadow

shifting on the baseboard. Orange
my safeword. Orange I said
Orange when we swam. My breath's

unreliable that way. Why is it
he said. I wanted to try
something new. Do you like it?
I said.

Curtains drawn, the day humming
outside like a fire engine on pause.
Orange ya glad to see me? The pea hens

trying to talk. Working on some kind
of clotted harp in their throats. Orange
I said Orange. I buy him a pile of them.

They disappear by the next morning,
leaving a smear on the chair. It's not
something I would normally

say, I tell him. That's why.
Corn syrup, then food coloring, two kinds.

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