August, and we finally sold
house. We took every book
of your study, all the rhinestone
and dangling pearls
your dresser. We tried to scrub
stains away from the kitchen’s
linoleum, but they wouldn’t
You spilled a lot of wine
you were alive. We ate
the floor in the dining room.
talked about the time
lost you in a department store,
found you hours later
The Prophet on a suede couch
the home department,
what took us so long.
I went for a walk
saw teenagers playing Frisbee in the graveyard,
out between headstones with arms
one of them cradling someone else’s
lilies. That’s the kind of place
live in now. A town that takes
from its dead.
apartment here is crowded with
furniture. I spend too much time
your couch, painting spirals
canvas. Sometimes I imagine
you once did the same thing
the same spot––sinking
the cushions as you married
the silver of a rain cloud.
would translate the moon
blue morning light
it would bring you back.
would keep every firefly
Pennsylvania in my ribcage.
would let the mountains envelop me
their darkness. I would silver
valley with paper lanterns
my mother’s garden.
would make lemon cake every night.
would plant iris in my driveway.
would follow the sound of water
Michelle Reed finished her BA in Creative Writing at Western Michigan
University and completed her MA in English at Bucknell University this past
spring. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in The Albion Review, Air
Poetry, and The Columbia Literary Review. In her spare time, she edits her own
(fledgling) magazine, Pink Slayer. Michelle works as a freelance writer and
editor in Chicago.