Evenings find her lying flat,
a slab of stone, smooth and chiseled,
imperfect in the eyes she imagines
fit snug in his sockets. When, in fact,
he sees radiance in every spoonful
of ice cream dissolving in her mouth,
or in her tousled caramel hair loose
and free, slowly streaming down soft
shoulders like a vivacious river,
bold and eloquent, producing quiet
floods. He voyages with craven rods
propped meticulously and nets casted
to catch hordes, fishing for easy hooks,
until the deluge overwhelms. He gasps
for air, submerged in torrents of fervent
cries to be loved, in lopsided effort, in
apathy so profound it’s cumbersome.
Guilt seeps into every pore and shared
space begins to desiccate, durable tears
dissipating as it becomes easier for her
to leave, breeding a void of suffocating
screams; he strains to escape a labyrinth
of secondhand string and nylon shackled
to each end of his limbs out of not only
regret, but also a fear to pain her again.