Lemon in Her Water

A reminder to taste
life. A gritty pressure
she climbs the old freight

house stairs—fair trade
and organic maybe, these coffee beans
he roasts are not grown locally

in some Minnesota backyard. A transplant,
she will never be as sustainable

as those local boys
she’s chased into bars, ditches,
haystacks, church

basements, the mouth
of the Mississippi. She’s a trickle
trying to cut a figure

worth restoring. Lime
was her father’s choice.


Birch logs lean against a bearing
wall unattached
to any story I can see. I live local
except when my fears go

express. I would roll my eyes at the one train
town except I would do it
all wrong. The rolling. Never could
raise one brow unhitched

from its mate. That tongue curling trick
goes unnoticed—a genetic disposition
toward depression and intensity
without regard for subject

or consequences. No one left
to blame—just a single obsidian
countenance to spill
onto this blanched nature.