soon to be in Fevers of the Mind Issue 6: The Empath Dies in the End
I was 1989 + you were Red how are we ever going to make this work? You can read my thoughts but never my handwriting you say it looks like Chinese chicken scratch & I don’t suppose I can say you’re wrong Spending nights in your room trying to memorize the exact diameter of your heart taking measurements with my soul the candle flickers everytime our eyelashes mesh you blush like the burgundy in our cups our kisses play on an endless loop in my best dreams Lower Nob Hill Across a cold open field reading Adrienne Rich on angel-less streets faded hearts chasing underwater moons this is what happens when nothing happens it feels good when you push up the volume it’s like a warning shot across my bow and you’ve gravel in your coffee cup when you stay up so late that it’s morning Islais Creek I remember I was listening to the radio and it was especially distinctive because I hadn’t heard that song in a very long time and I was sort of driving along while my mind was strolling down Memory Lane I was making turns and stopping at red lights without really noticing at all I was singing to myself out loud a little bit remembering and then forgetting some words here and there There’s something in the melody line we were melting in the middle eight approaching the original light source the chorus breaks down the construct there’s a ghost-note in there somewhere I opened my eyes and I was parked in front of your house these memories have crossed the line I follow the sound down another worm hole through the center of my memory back to the end of the beginning of time 16th Avenue Tiled Steps Wagon wheels & satellite dishes Alexa, adjust the weather vane Telephone poles line the road like repetitive crucifixes leading the way in the land where cotton still grows and nobody knows the names of the trees anymore Going 85 in opposite directions less than six feet apart A box of pizza in the backseat box of ashes in the trunk box of rain on the radio Mimi’s final road trip Lazy cows with their four stomachs grazing in the shade Jesus Saves- written in dust on the back of an eighteen-wheeler the hills are rolling clouds lilted to the side Trump-Pence yard signs faded by the sun condemned to stare across the roadside forever Mission Dolores Park I know you blank a lot that’s why I let you play Elaine and I think you put it on a bit when you go and kick the rain you pull back your hair and it gives me the swirls still, I know I’m someone else’s but you mistake me for yours you make me feel like the sun on your skin and with the rain that you touch the words cant fall down fast enough my sweet, you talk and knock me right over and I just cant find my mind I really fall when I think of it all it’s all right, it’s summertime and you know what? I’m feeling so good now I don’t think I’m anyone’s else anymore come on and walk me to the corner-store it’s only sometimes that I’m shy like when I’m deep down in-between the stars up in the middle of the sky Bio: Christian Garduno’s work can be read in over 100 literary magazines. He is the recipient of the 2019 national Willie Morris Award for Southern Poetry, a Finalist in the 2020-2021 Tennessee Williams & New Orleans Writing Contest, and a Finalist in the 2021 Julia Darling Memorial Poetry Prize. He lives and writes along the South Texas coast with his wonderful wife Nahemie and young son Dylan.