Gradually, this new life closes over your absence like a scab.
The wound was smaller than it felt, the world so much bigger.
Right down the street—an abandoned gaslight plant
overgrown with grass and children. A farmers’ market
selling strawberry muffins and goat’s milk soap.
You always thought leaving me would be pulling a pin
from a grenade, thought I couldn’t withstand
such cataclysmic detonation, but this is me climbing
from the crater. Washing the red down the drain.
On the far side of Dodge, glaciers roll back to reveal
circles of standing stones, dolmens full of bones.
To detonate is to excavate, to excavate to unlayer.
Beneath the pungent smoke is a certain sweetness,
beneath the separation, a kind of marriage.
Rita Feinstein is the author of the poetry chapbook Life on Dodge (Brain Mill Press, 2018). Her work has appeared in Grist, Willow Springs, and Sugar House, among other publications, and has been nominated for Best of the Net and Best New Poets. She received her MFA from Oregon State University. Twitter handle: @RitaFeinsteinAlex DiFrancesco is a multi-genre writer who has published work in Tin House, The Washington Post, Pacific Standard, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, The New Ohio Review, Brevity and more. In 2019, they published their essay collection Psychopomps (Civil Coping Mechanisms Press) and their novel All City (Seven Stories Press), which was a finalist for the Ohioana Book Awards. Their short story collection Transmutation (Seven Stories Press) is forthcoming in 2021. They are the recipient of grants and fellowships from PEN America and Sundress Academy for the Arts. They are an assistant editor at Sundress Publications.
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