My Hair Remembers Everything

Ruth Awad

that was our first anguish: the way he opened

me and our shadows churned in street-lit

gilt – take it back – his last sip of bourbon

stinging the roof of my mouth, the woman

he left to raise horses alone, I would’ve let him

stampede my heart, too, I would’ve stood

naked in the January night, adorned myself

in the one note the moon made, grown jagged

as a crown – what brought his hand to my head

in that blue reverence? I burned for him like a city.

I unspooled my hair and sewed his name on every

bridge, I kissed him and tasted riverwater, I was

threadbare and nacred as a pearl – bring it back –

my hair absconding with the gospel of his touching.

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