“He asks me why.
“Why would you let your lips wander
like sky lanterns and vagabonds?”
Why. As if there was an answer.
Why? Because I was hungry.
Because I was bored.
Because I’m a slut or whatever.
Because I was missing you
and you are always two thousand miles
up the nearest mountain.
Because his eyes were like tidal pools
and my hands were burning in the sunlight
and I didn’t know what else to do.
Because he said I was beautiful
and the levees in my judgment broke
and I flooded his mouth with hidden desire.
Because I am eighteen years old
and it was a Tuesday in June
and there are love-making forces
outside of a poor eighteen-year-old’s control
when it is a Tuesday in June
and the wasps are buzzing against the honeybees.
Because love is like a river
and it never flows directly north or south.
Because love, like all things,
is both real and not real, sane and insane.
Because love turns decent people
into mindless witch creatures and selfish ghosts.
I don’t know.
I don’t know where to put my hands
and I don’t know what to do
with my wretched, wanting heart
and I don’t know how to tell you that—
god damn it all—
I still love you to pieces anyway.”