The Beginning Stages of Connecting the Dots
Your left arm scar shaped
like a Titanoboa snake slithering
down a bone-shy ravine shoulder
to elbow bit me halfway
around September Lake, jogging
shirtless in rainbow-frayed
board shorts, sweating out
last night’s karaoke-picks,
ale-rounds, and midnight diners,
working hard to stitch
distance fears into boyfriend
paradise craving permanency
of excess. “What happened?”
I asked coyly, though I am not,
outsider boldness tempered
only by animalistic gravity.
“Oh that,” you said, redressing
the rift. “It’s nothing. Really.
Don’t worry. I’m better. I’m fine.”
“Does it hurt?” I asked,
looking for any reason
to touch you, to trace the cobra,
to fill the ravine, to get
close and stay closer, to become
through constant contact.
“Sarcoma at seventeen,” you said,
restarting the jog, rousing silence
except for the bottom of
tennis shoes scuffing rebel dirt
specters creeping like parked
cars in a cement lot flanked by
spotless ponds and smooth trees
lined with idyllic bark and vines.
You waved goodbye with your
right arm, keeping hidden for five
thousand moons rougher, more
malignant mutilations mutating within.
Samuel Cole lives in Woodbury, MN, where he finds work in special event/development management. He’s a poet, flash fiction geek, and political essayist enthusiast. His work has appeared in many literary journals, and his first poetry collection, Bereft and the Same-Sex Heart (2016) is available from Pski’s Porch. He is also a prize-winning card maker and scrapbooker.