A Correspondence Between Laura and Dale, 1989 | by Kolleen Carney Hoepfner

What does it mean      when all we have between us
is the lap lap lap of river water           against a blue cheek
the smell of minerals and fish              the grit of the shore

And do you remember                          when you told me all you saw in me
was the void and cloudless sky—       do you remember the rush of stars
on our faces and when I leaned in     I whispered and you turned

and took my hand        What does it mean when we emerge together
with twigs in our hair and mouths     And will you rescue me
over and over again     Do you promise                       Will you save me

Your warm hand on my bare shoulder                        the warmest hand
the last hand   the last of thousands of hands clawing and needing
Your hand is gentle     Did you know that      Was that a kindness

or are you always this kind?   Will you think about me
when you’re wide eyed and unknowing                       uncomprehending
and terrified    Will you listen to the sound     of a thousand pretty birds

and remember my name          like a dream
where nothing makes sense     but in a way does        in a dream way
When it is in our house again will you scream                         and run

If I pretend not to know you    do you promise you’ll still hold my hand
Will you introduce yourself to my parents      Will you dance me to the end
of this existence             a place where a diary              locks a girl’s secrets away

 

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Kolleen Carney Hoepfner’s poetry and other writings can be found in Five 2 One Magazine, Watershed Review, Golden Walkman, Uno Kudo, Bad Pony, Rabid Oak, Birth.Movies.Death, and elsewhere. Kolleen serves as Editor in Chief of Drunk Monkeys, and is the Managing Editor and Social Media Coordinator for Zoetic Press. She lives in Burbank, California, with her husband and son. Her website is www.kolleencarney.com. She tweets at @KolleenCarney

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