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I Was Your Brightest Hour, You Said


12.02.19 Posted in today's words by

Susan Sonde’s most recent poem to appear here was “Extinction Theory” (October 2019).

I Was Your Brightest Hour, You Said
By Susan Sonde

then took the sum that was the sun from my dripline
and planted your wept rose in my deluge. Your pitch
so perfect, your loathing masked behind the fertilest
green, the smallest of fists with which you patrolled
my real estate, my body.

All your waning

really wanted was to steal the radiance from my dive
bar. All I really wanted was not-wanting-to love you.

I washed the stars, long past washing, ironed out our
words, but each time you broke from my keyboard
parlance, my woke tears. By this I mean, there never
was a time that didn’t see you sequestering from me
in the furthest reaches

of our mutual acquiescence.

My numbers benched themselves. For so long you’d
been showing me the right way

to be ashamed of myself.

Like you, your lovers were self-absorbed, thought
nothing of phoning me, mine to boast. I lived like
an insect, terra incognita. My river strider instincts
kept me afloat but flailing.

I’ve made a memory of this and filled it with black
holes. I see them in my dreams. My dreams suck

up my waking hours; hurt with love is no love at all.

My rooms are naked. My air plants have died. Outside
my windows the gutters snipe: we need to bruise you.

You kidnapped my body and silenced my heart. I hurt
in the kidnap hours between dreams. There must be a
name for this

kind of drowning

the blood-stir that signaled your departures as if my long-
awaited punishment.

Let’s have a dialogue

not full of silence please, that stillness of after: full throttle
glottal stop. Only a moment, I plead, for the stars and yes
to make love again.

Hold me between your anachronistic fingers. My blood’s
a thorn. I want for nothing, but my body taciturn is
listening for bits of love like white noise: a buzz to come

from your boxed hive.

Our vagrant lives have wound up far apart and somewhere
up the street, who knows how far, an overheated, bloated
sun’s cheating fields of sorghum and peonies out of their full-
blown golden dreams

their parched stalks breaking.



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