Up Downtown

You were very much short,
with dark hair and big hands.
And you liked the way she walked,
from downtown and over
& the way she paced in front
of kitchen windows, the way it was white
when she sat down in the big grove
of elm trees & the way the road covered up
the hitchhike in the fore-general store,
sometimes, with a bare, red wagon out front.
You liked the way the shop was painted—
the same sandy beige like the steep trail
just down the hill through the timber store,
underneath grey overcast skies that hung so low,
you could almost lick clouds. But you didn’t like
the way the wagon stopped: a bit beyond
the bay blue lake that was usually white-capped
like bare cotton balls & the way the big elm stood
naked, without something at all / the way the ache
clicked in you, like the same way her cane washed
the pegged walnut floors, erect under her palms.
You didn’t want to pretend, be blind,
from the absent peg on the kitchen window,
so that when you came down with the jug, a little bit
rumpled, you wouldn’t collect
the truth—she never had come.

Alisha Yi is a writer from Las Vegas, Nevada.

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