Colette Arrand's poems have been published in or are forthcoming from Hobart, KNOCKOUT, SmokeLong Quarterly, JMMW, and elsewhere. They're currently a student in the University of Georgia’s PhD program in creative writing.
In a bookstore, I saw Atlas figure on the covers of innumerable
paperbacks and thought of you. Brother, the burden those arms
must carry. The work of lifting giants, quelling earthquakes, mauling
t-shirts, an cupping the noise of the mob to an ear is yours;
you asked for it then and you ask for it now. Your arms I imagined
variously: the jack lifting a car over my father’s body, the cranes
in my mother’s factory, twin pythons that could devour my problems
were I able to scream your name loud enough. I screamed,
but I won’t see you in the flesh until that flesh, no longer taut,
is incapable of its former glories. Until then, I invent my own encounters
and spin those. Here is one: Once, I claimed to have met you
at a Big Boy restaurant, pouring syrup on a stack of pancakes.
When you took my hand in yours, it disappeared. Then you did.
Cup your ear, Hulk. Tonight, when I call out, come. Lift me.