no New York-skyline-moment no dark fumblings smashed pale with ecstasy on the sofa no violets in the morning coffee the two stains wiped clean no late-night-ontology sat on the scratched kitchen worktop waiting for the sunrise to smudge through the glass your face will never shatter between my hands again your son will forget my name & you’ll will wince with reflex at the sight of every amputee our daughter a concept I’ve dreamt of enough to be at my fingertips your blood-red hair my lips which were never worth the value you shored your life against you will redact my version of us with the black highlighters of your eyes
the first woman whose hair didn’t melt in my hands you sweated out the myths the adverts slipped in your milk miraculous your calves the poem I couldn’t write one glance had me crawling out of the tumbler listening to your blood sing as you slept our early life together a trail of ash-greased clothes & I’m pinching our past into a nosebleed it flows how your hair-dye gored the bathroom sink Winehouse staining the air the evening’s blister tore into one long burn our dreams so light it seemed a stiff breeze could have taken them
DANIEL SLUMAN‘s poems have appeared widely in journals such as Cadaverine, Popshot, Shit Creek Review, and Under the Radar. He received an MA in Creative & Critical Writing from the University of Gloucestershire in 2012 and his debut full-length collection, Absence has a weight of its own, was published in 2012. His second collection, the terrible, will be published Autumn/Winter 2015, also with Nine Arches Press.