Jade Hancer



You read me
poems. The word “zinnias”
sticks to my mind for weeks.
Peanut butter soft palate. I mouth
it without even realizing your lips
are moving. Mine. In the shadow of
the garden, the smell rises.
Overripe strawberries and
your hands holding a trembling joint.
Cheshire grin, ash laughs as it
dusts the soil and too-skinny zucchinis,
but I don’t think I’m high. I haven’t
eaten in weeks, and I pretend
not to notice the forest sitting
behind us. Sleepy-eyed
and augmented. I mean autumn.

I read you
poems I wrote about
you. “I know the feeling.”
When you live alone no one
tells you. Dahlia-flowered. The frozen blueberries
in your teeth. The cheap bottle
of vinegar we mistake for wine. We
lie on the floor, throwing decks of cards up
just to laugh at the way they fall down
on our flushed faces. In the sunflower tribe.
Leave the dried stalks for the bees. With (in)
the daisy family. I, too, want to be
the unapologetic pollen caught in the blonde
forest breeze of my thighs.