Cecilia, why aren’t you laughing?
and I will edge open
along my spine
where the nerve of storm
falls along the open expanse
of meadow and wet marsh
this is an absurd way
to get to know someone
but let’s burn this bar to the ground
and roast marshmallows
over its middle-of-the-night demise
and if the shadow of laughter
hails outward with its caustic contralto
into the valley along peace river
where winter will have buried the details of our crime
slap me hard in the face
and tell me that it was for my own good.
James Diaz, an activist and author, lives in upstate New York. His work has appeared in Ditch, Chronogram, Cheap Pop Lit, Foliate Oak, The Voices Project, Pismire, Epigraph, My Favorite Bullet, and Collective Exile. He is the founding editor of the literary arts magazine Anti-Heroin Chic.
This poem is not previously published.