Twelfth Summer
Paisley S. Burklow

The first time anyone ever held my hand
we were dangling on a black
and yellow roller coaster,
the same one that decapitated
that guy who only jumped
the fence to grab back
a baseball cap.
The one his grandfather gave him.
I can imagine it might be hard
to wear a hat with no head.

His sticky hands, covered in thirteen
year old skin, hung from two holes
of a ripped Radiohead shirt.
We stood inside some hot month, maybe June,
with removable kneecaps and crooked
collar bones, too sharp to rest a soft cheek
against, and my skin began to pickle from the sweat
and my stomach floated up above my head
and your pores were so big
I could swim in them, and I did, standing
under spirals of metal wind.


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