"How long will the bed that we made together
hold us there? Your stubbled cheeks grazed my skin
from evening to dawn, a cloud of scattered
particles now, islands of shaving foam
slowly spiraling down the drain, blood drops
stippling the water pink as I kiss
the back of your neck, our faces framed inside
a medicine cabinet mirror. The blade
of your hand carves a portal out of steam,
the two of us like boys behind frosted glass
who wave goodbye while a car shoves off
into winter. All that went unnoticed
till now — empty cups of coffee stacked up
in the sink, the neighborhood kids
up to their necks in mounds of autumn leaves.
How months on a kitchen calendar drop
like frozen flies, the flu season at its peak
followed by a train of magic-markered
xxx’s — nights we’d spend apart. Death must work
that way, a string of long distance calls
that only gets through to the sound of your voice
on our machine, my heart’s mute confession
screened out. How long before we turn away
from flowers altogether, your blind hand
reaching past our bedridden shoulders
to hit that digital alarm at delayed
intervals — till you shut it off completely.”

An ocean is nothing, there is no separation between. And I knew just what it took: hours, two meals with a movie in between, blinders over eyes, plugs in ears as I tried to get some sleep. When I awoke, I knew I’d crossed more than a time zone for my body was always nearer to yours than anyone else’s still sleeping in your bed.

—he says you make me
want to put a bullet through
my skull, why don’t you take me
to the nearest service station
selling ammo at this hour, can’t
leave you so better for us to
go together. Is he merely being
dramatic when a vodka flask
pokes out of that vintage jacket
his father finally passed on
to him while he jams my thumb
into the corner of his mouth,
rubbing my fleshy pad over
his teeth…some people
get a tattoo on impulse to show
the world they mean it, how love is
worth the pain, people who know
nothing about being taken apart
by this: how I only want his mouth
to finish off what we started—