CHICAGO ’07

Jessica Van de Kemp

 
 
I sit like a mink
in Andy’s Jazz Club.
 
The waitress brings water
for my starving gut.
 
The ice is smooth velvet.
You’re at the Marriott,
 
soaking in Epsom salt.
Our lives are milk and rust.
 
The city’s red.
Yesterday’s newspaper reads:
 
AT LEAST 32 KILLED
AT VIRGINIA TECH.
 
What if the dead
take hold of us?
 
What if we tuck their music
behind our ears?
 
At the Navy Pier,
you ride the Ferris wheel
 
despite your fear of heights.
You figure out what to do
 
with your life.
The dead remember
 
how we looked
when we were born ─
 
little souls
flying in the current.
 
We lose ourselves.
We want to.
 
I wake to your face
floating like a jewel in the dark.

 
 

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