Upstream

1 August 2012

Cigarette smoke tumbles over lawn-puncturing high-heels,
punchy accessories, splashes of color. Amanda blows smoke rings
that expand toward the stars. My waking age reels
before me amid rocks and retches. It tangles in palpitant strings

tied up between tall cans rowed like soldiers, roadside crosses,
and IV stands; I don’t have a glass to sit behind.
G&Ts offer to soften my edges, pry open my losses,
hum me synchronous with the smoky porch: I politely decline.

The lawn chair sucks onto the backs of my thighs
while I try to dissolve. Elias perfects his French inhale,
as a cichlid transmutation glasses my eyes.
The smoke settles into a film over my hardening scales.

Swimming away under everyone’s kaleidoscopes, I think
how good it must feel to let oneself sink.

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