"Nubus" watercolor 2015 Dima Rebus

"Nubus"
watercolor
2015
Dima Rebus

OLIVIA OLSON

Quiet

Before you set about forgetting me
in earnest, let’s once more watch
the green rain throw fits
against the window, sip gin,
let persimmons feather our teeth
and tongues, payback
for serving up their unripe
bodies. Let’s watch
once more the sweep
of headlights along the ceiling
and feel sought, feel outlaws,
wise and swaddled
in our sweet, shared dark--

someone here thinks you are lovely,
could that be enough? Someone here sees
this light, your skin sopping
it up, and thinks it lovely. But it is not
enough. By morning
all this will spill up and over
and into the shocked street
where all the quiet people walk.

 

 

Outside Lakeside Bar

A man in the doorway speaks tenderly
to his dog-- You’re thirsty,    
aren’t you?
He pours water    
into a bowl.
From outside, syncopated
cawing crackles
the trees. Inside, men         
are moaning
in the TV blue, turning        
hope to disappointment,
disappointment to anger.     
Everything, eventually,
to anger.
 

Bugs flutter             
apart the lamplight. The dog,
through his breathing,        
laps. The man sees me, remembers
himself, pulls inside        
himself.
I walk across the street,     
into woods till the path
peels apart at the beach.     
Police are huddled around
a red pickup, parked crooked    
at the lip of the lake, no road
for at least a mile.
A man I love once spoke    
too well about the most
decent ways             
to die, to sink down            
 

into a lovely place
and let that place be all
there is. To leave         
an unlovely
corpse for men            
who don’t see
the meaning             
in it. But I
know better.
The radios chatter        
through the din
of crickets, and the waves    
at the surface
of the lake make one         
smooth sweep
to the west,            
like the back of hand
across a face.

 

 

Olivia Olson is a librarian in metro Detroit. She is studying poetry at Warren Wilson College and has recently been published in The Offing, BOAAT Journal, RHINO, and others. Find a full list of published works and a chatty blog at oliviaeolson.com