AFTER THE WOODS

For Justin Webb

Originally published in Issue 7 of Wyvern Lit

 

For the first time, the night after
bonding in the woods.

For the second time,
in my belly dancing skirt
when I swallowed too much tequila
because I thought my uncle had been shot.

For the third time,
after I was hit by that car while riding my bike
and I came to you.

For the fourth time,
when I left before things got started
to go have coffee with my friends.

For the time when I returned
from Ireland, when nothing happened.

For when we spent three hours trying
to find an adverb.

I was learning my way around
from the north side of campus.
I was learning my way through your language.
I was learning how things don’t fit.

I was learning about the taste
I couldn’t get out of my mouth,
was learning that tomatoes could be more remarkable
than I’d previously known.

For when you wrote to me on my birthday,
when you wrote to me in the middle of the night,
when you wrote to me from your new address,
when you wrote to me and then you didn’t anymore.

For the first time, after the woods.