First Kiss, Last Kiss

a concertina of moments
expanding out like
inflating lungs

at the end my trembling back
lumpy breathing through
sobs and you
holding me.
softness in your lips.

I don’t want to forget a
moment of you and me
I check for them like
a new bride checks for her
wedding ring

you were wearing my scarf
the first time. leaned in then
readjusted it, this small
crooked smile.

opening a door I didn’t know was there
a new part of myself or
what was already there reflected back and

I would not be without this would not
be without the twist of your hand back during sex to hold mine your
honesty that
open-mouthed laugh the
bones of your sternum how
gorgeous you look naked your
tempered logic your

I want to hold every second
for the rest of my life.

Eloise CC Shepherd is a writer and poet with a surprisingly successful sideline in boxing. She is co-founder of The Liminal Residency, an alternative writers’ retreat taking place in a range of neglected and unusual spaces. You can find her work in New Writing 13, The Fiction Desk and Stories from another London. She recently spent a month in the Rockies as part of the Banff Centre Mountain and Wilderness Writing programme. @faithlehanne on Twitter and Instagram.

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