Vox Teardrop

For Steve

Taken from the vault,
it gets warbled, deeper, slurred
when the batteries inside begin to rot
and seep. Recorded

on the west bank
of the Saint Croix River before I knew
what that meant, our conversation
was my monologue—became yours—then

it just stopped.

Just So You Know

Always hated fire
works, always
will. I’ll be staying 

away. One bad jump
off a life
guard stand into State 

Beach sand, a twisted
ankle no amount
of eye candy color 

over the ocean
could soothe. Never
mind the explosions. Black 

Market or Black Cat brand,
either way a 500-gram cake
of flame tails awaits 

on the other side. I’ll not be crossing 

the river or state line. I’ll be back
on that beach—super pyro, 

invincible, never mind
the explosions.
Just never mind.