Before I leave for good, I lift the pie server a final
time, drop the receipt facedown next to the lemon
blueberry slice, then my apron in the parking lot
like a betting ticket. There a Gallopalooza, stationary
as all the others scattered across the city—greets me.
I move on. I’m looking for animation.
Can’t go home, so, I disrobe in a stranger’s yard,
wash the batter away with a garden hose, then ride
the night bus like a carousel. Static girl. Moving room
of mirrors. Stilled blue bolts streaking the dark—
there & then not—a stream of atoms pulled
from my cheek. I’m splitting. Coming apart.
I’m leaving & being left. I’m looking for you
in all your haunts, until I realize I will find you
at one of my own: In the long field,
synced lightning bugs near their show’s climax.
In the brief flashes of cold light, a glimpse of your coat
Black as flight. When they move on, it’s just us,
six legs to the ground, still as statues, touching flat
the bridge of our noses. When you release
your wings, they swing wide as a gate.
The air lifts the snakes from my shoulders.