Gina Keicher is the author of the poetry collection Wilderness Champion (Gold Wake Press, 2014) and the chapbook Here is My Adventure I Call it Alone (Dancing Girl Press, 2015). She is an associate editor for Black Lawrence Press. Recent work appears or is forthcoming in Ampersand Review, inter|rupture, Whiskey Island, and Word Riot. She lives in Ithaca, New York. Visit her online at www.ginakeicher.com.
Date Night in High Humidity
Dear Francis, Leaving is equal parts
laundry and vinegar, hot water
and baking soda. Your fingernails,
chipped in work, serrate our yellow sheets.
We wake up inside a toaster.
We step on crumbs to reach the door.
You have this flair for knowing
absence. There is sunlight in Alaska.
A thing I smell when I know it.
The matchless sound. Wood on wood.
Thousands of minerals pressed into rock
make me dizzy. Eight hours to build
a night make us less sharp. You bring
the bottle. I wear my dress bathed
in my want for rain, steeped in sweat.
We swing on the porch, watch
the neighborhood wave in the heat.
Cars shimmer in driveways.
Kids crack eggs on the tar. Summer swells
doorframes. The car handle burns.
Makes driving a chore. Show me
your fingers, the small cuts between them.
The street is a mall. Bags of tissue and gifts.
A man in an apron tells people to get married.
If we pull up the rug, we will find history.
We will find space and people who starved
when they floated off into the universe.
Stains that could be patterns in the grain.
A lost ring or missing button. Lighter inside
than out. We may be seen as ash or night
debris. Even closing a door quietly
is a difficult sound to repeat.