4.5.19: clementine

I once stood in the blank, sun-white room of a gallery

before an earthy rawhide form,

fashioned into the shape of a jacket

inside the jacket, something red

something striving and small

and shamelessly warm


I cried, overcome


I imagine time as needled thread

borrowed from worn fabric

willed into straight lines

so both ends know the same view

I imagine time as Valentine’s cards cut from construction paper

it folds symmetrically

halves touching

in private, knowing conference

awaiting my arrival

I imagine time curling in on itself

licking its wounds

everything is alive, and wanting to know it is alive

chasing its own image to confirm

that it exists

because it existed before


I was on the interstate at night when the rain came

hot red tails lapped the lights ahead

dark blue, and red tails

and a clementine

that I peeled, absently, in my right hand

I split it into three segments

and smelling it, I felt my throat constrict

something shone like a heart

but I swallowed it whole

and felt the hot tears of recognition

I became what I wanted to save

but there’s nothing else

I could have been