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And my lips freeze, my hair becomes
a blizzard of gray and silver, follicles
rising from my head, those upside-down

icicles bristling with cold. I feel
your hand, that rudder steering my red
heart along some shadow-wooded path

into a clearing of women wrapped
in the stillness of their heavy coats,
shoulder to shoulder, yet each alone

with her private grief. It’s through your

eyes I see them, faces crumpled and
dissolving into tears, their wrinkled hands

a symphony of silent wails. Too late to roll
away, I touch your back, that smooth field
of longing and regret. My fingers burn

their way along your neck and hair,
I gasp for breath. Swimming in your scent
I struggle toward the far shore, my arms

desperate in the search for you. I touch
your face, cheekbones sculpted beneath
your vibrant flesh of leaves and cream

longing for my first taste of you.


Steve Klepetar’s work has appeared widely and has received several nominations for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. His chapbook Thirty-six Crows was published in 2010 by erbacce-press.

© 2013, Steve Klepetar

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