BOS to LAX to MEL

For Nikola
by Maranda Greenwood

An ocean and a decade rest between us, that’s 11,000 miles

and a generation. Everybody has something to say about it.

I lay next to her in bed, her sleep-tongue licks her lips

every few minutes and her eyebrows move as though

they have tasted something delicious,

like vanilla or bourbon.

Tonight she sleeps with her mouth half open.

The globe on the nightstand backdrops the shine on her lips

making it look like she’s drinking the pacific,

closing the distance that will separate us.

I am learning to love her in kilograms, centimeters,

millimeters, Celsius, wrong-sided and accented.

She reaches for me, thumb stroking the inside of my wrist

as though the raised tattoo ink is real feathers.

I run my hand over her identical raised ink lines,

and the smooth white scars that rest beneath them.

She’s dreaming and unaware that I am learning her

in tiny details, at once familiar and foreign.

I repeat them now, and every night

to lull myself to sleep—

kilos,

centimeters,

millimeters,

Celsius,

left-sided,

“bettah”

sleep-reach

sad hands,

wrist scars,

drink the pacific.

Maranda Greenwood is a Vermont poet, she holds an MFA in Poetry from Arcadia University. Her work can be found in Sundog Lit, Crab Fat Magazine, White Stag and other journals. In her free time, she collects Zoltar tickets.

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April 2019

© 2020 by The Esthetic Apostle