On Turning Deuce Deuce & Parting Yellows and Blues, poems by Drew Kalbach

      On Turning Deuce Deuce

      Sitting on metal chairs under
      an umbrella, we watch the lightning
      crack in the sky like flint.
      She takes off her makeup
      with chlorine and pink towels,
      the rain bouncing off the roof
      and dropping like snow
      on the patio. I undid her hair
      and it slapped against shoulders
      made from charred wood.
      Yellow lilacs reflect in her iris
      and are starting to sag
      from the rain. Their laughter bends
      like light through soap
      and seems to stretch in slow motion
      across the table. I recoil and point
      to the only star in the sky,
      an airplane's tail blinking
      red and green.
      I roll over in the water,
      lounge on the white plastic steps
      as a tiki torch tosses dark yellow light in and out of the fake blue pool.
      The sky blanketed, the day dragging on,
      laughter still sour and echoing ah,
      I float to the deep end and count sharks circling around the drain. They grin, and I grin, and the ah comes back to me.

      Parting Yellows

      and Blues

      I left her back pressed
      against a fence post, the white
      splashing across her charred skin
      like waves crashing on sand.
      And the night continued on
      despite our tiffs, headboard knock
      against the wall with dark blue
      curtains pulled shut tight.
      What of time? Eleven on the dot,
      time to leave, time enough at least
      to hug goodbye, sometimes awkward,
      but the neighbors are tossing
      in their sleep and ready
      to pound the ceiling with a broom.
      The red checkered tie hanging
      on the bedroom door handle
      came loose and dropped onto the floor,
      the bathtub emptied, oven shut,
      scrubbed, locked for tomorrow.

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Kate Clanchy