After a while, I knew
how to fold myself
into a thin line

like moth wings
pressed together
how to fly. 

I shed
of words
so what was left
in loose clothes.

and through the screen door,
I watched you

bunched on the concrete stoop
still belching out cuss words,
face engorged, roasted with rages
I could never anticipate,

the white plate—just shattered by you—
in shards like teeth scattered,
still aching on linoleum,
no way for me to end this well.

All that time
I remained
barely there, 
just a strand
of long black hair

like the ones you find
for months afterward
in your bed, on your clothes


Published in Helix Magazine, Spring 2013.

Website photo courtesy of Michael Knemeyer