is an online magazine of the literary arts.

24 May 2006 | Vol. 6, No. 1

Speaking Honestly About You

for L.M. (1980-2004)

Watching you, we squinted our eyes as if trying to extract one of those three dimensional dinosaurs from a swarm of dots. "You're a real firecracker," someone once said, though we laughed about it later, grouping it with all the bad love poems your ex-boyfriend used to write.

When you talked about music, your pupils flared like ink stains, and you leaned against the table's edge with the thud of a child witnessing magic. "She was tragically amorous," we said, when your song was finished and hung in wet ribbons from our personal ceilings, "she fell in love with men, women… anything."

Your mother calls on what would have been your 24th birthday. Yanking each word from the flowerbed of her gut, she tells me, "It's something I'm so scared I'll forget… how beautiful her tiny hands were."

In a whirl of smoke, I declared you a "soulmate," I spelled your skin in the alphabet of a smitten daughter. The next morning, I apologized, admitting how "when we hang out, all I can think to say are clichés." "Oh sweetie," you told me, your eyes shaking like finches, your breath stinking, "isn't love cliché."

About the author:

Lane Falcon's poems can be found in Milk Literary Magazine, Pebble Lake Review, Wicked Alice Poetry Journal, and more. She lives in New York City.



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