Written by Cameron Calonzo

Edited by Rodlyn Mae-Banting

Dry bitten lips, voice like the sun, 

I guess I will always find you under my fingernails. 

When I whisper your name, the fearful song 

lifts and drapes across the sidewalk, through 

the light-starved branches, up, up, but 

not away, never away. 

There’s your color in that display window. 

Opaque. The kind of depth that made you look twice. 

There’s your laugh in the breaking tide. 

Soft. Above all, lingering. 

Perched upon my chest like a sparrow in the 

misty eaves, there’s you, you as I know you and 

you as I dreamt you and every you in between. 

In the kitchen the morning after you, I woke early. 

When I was stirring the pot, the oil swirled into 

the shape of a heart—though now I think 

that blob could hardly be mistaken for 

a heart, it was just my eyes—and I 

stared at it for so long that it boiled over 

and ruined my new shoes. I didn’t care, of course; 

I made it for you, I made this for you, 

everything I am is for you, whether you want it 

or not. 

I spent my nights dreaming of mirrors, 

windows where I’d find you leaning against the frame, 

of the gilded trail you’d leave across the cracked wood. 

I would trace my thumb against the glass and 

imagine it unshattered, whole and 

clear; burnished, shining like the light 

through the blinds, the weight even and 

comforting between my palms.

Outside, I can see the birds nestled in the trees. 

I can hear the faint whistle of the breeze through 

each blade of grass, the skipping of the leaves 

against the pavement. It’s day here, inside. 

The lamp does not flicker. Yet still 

I yearn for the rays of heat dancing just above 

the roof. Still I ache, and I wait, and I 

hum to pass the time. 

Illustration by Andy Pham
Instagram: @beingofmatter_art

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