Pages and Pages

I’d like to read every book
on your shelves,
find each dog-eared page,
the sentences underlined,
the fragments of musical text
you found most fascinating.
I’d string them together
with a glue gun,
wrap that lexicon noose
around my bare skin,
let the font heat and
bleed into my dermis
the way your tears and
tongue once did.
But most of all,
I’d like to read your diary,
the one you always hid
in the closet mop bucket,
the one that you sometimes
held with trembling birdlike hands,
the one a bolt-cutter
couldn’t even open.
I’d read it as if it
was the tax code,
without one hint of mirth or ire,
like a cadaver whose soul
has already ascended
looking for a mate
among the rafters.

Len Kuntz is a writer from Washington State and the author of four books, most recently a poetry collection, The Dishonesty of Certain Mirrors, out now from Červená Barva Press, and This Is Why I Need You, a story collection forthcoming from Ravenna Press in June of this year. You can also find him at

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