Eyes Closed Legs Crossed
by Helen Pruitt Wallace
We sat trying to read each other’s minds,
to imagine hunger, any kind, of which
we knew little, lucky as we were
in our childhood. Hunger is …
a wound, a lost child … faint smell
of a father’s cigar—no—the red tip
of it … sun snaking through plains,
jagged rocks, or maybe just their scales,
that brittle lichen lacing up, flaking?
A pause in the angle of a wrist
becomes a white anthurium tossed
(in a gesture of grief?) there,
by the side of a road. I remember
the ache of that road, I watched it
for hours back then: dust kicking up
in certain light, a tinge—of what was it—
hunger? Did it go by the name of desire?
That mad press of tires, that contact?
Published on September 5, 2019