Redressed

By KRISTA LEAHY

Cold beer, slippery hands, cigarettes no one (everyone) wanted,

smoke from our burning lungs summoning the night sky,

not-tying the horizon closed until even toothpick jokes

stopped propping our eyelids open and we blinked,

hands slipped, smoke ceased, not-knots loosed the day–

roof, streets, people, trees, all dressed in the bruise of first light.

 

Not sunrise, but sunbroke, sunbroken:  pale, blue, eyelid ache.

 

Tonight, let’s clasp hands, postpone sleep, try not to blink–

share a beer, trade smokes, tie earth to sky, imagine

tomorrow, unbruised, horizon, unbroken, our skin

stripped to our toothpick bones, hot ivory

cigarettes no one (everyone) wants.  Smoke stings

but don’t blink.  Brave the burn.  Burn the bruise.

 

Not sunrise, but sunskin, sunskinned:  fresh, red, flesh un-ache.

 

 

Krista Leahy’s poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Tin House, Raritan, Free Lunch, and elsewhere.

Redressed

Related Posts

opulent room 1

Modest for a Dictator

IRINA HRINOSCHI
They were executed in winter: Nicolae Ceaușescu, and his wife Elena, who was also shot, but in people’s minds this was secondary to her being an insufferable pseudo-intellectual who loved fur coats. And their children, Nicu, Zoe and Valentin, spared during the 1989 Revolution.

white mailbox on the side of a road

A Road, the Sun

CAROLYN KUEBLER
The warmth of the sun, her skin warming up too. Yes, this is it, she says. I have always been and will always be this way. But what way is this? Is it happiness?

A tree growing in a bucket. Twisted branches spiral upward from the large green basin the tree sits in. It's a sunny day in the woods.

Ugly Trees

HEATHER E. GOODMAN
We have a really ugly sugar maple in our front yard. Yard is a euphemism for dirt and weeds. Dirt is a euphemism for clay and rocks. Weeds is a euphemism for invasive species and exhaustion. But we love this ugly tree.