A word is written underneath her naval. I bend to see clearly but my head is blocked by phantom corners. Squinting only smears—I reach, restrained, and know the neckline pull of fingers on my pulse, the vertigo of wanting.
The word is five weeks long, but it’s rumor. I echo what’s pronounced and stumble over growing syllables. The ink won’t dry though; it spreads to palms, needs reading. She rests on elocution like an undiscovered bone.
She is whole where I remember less warmth, hovering unseen like a painter over canvas. I press myself against her blindly like a wall against the wind, waiting for a word to make my own.
Andrew Collard lives in Madison Heights, MI with wife/cats/Outrageous Cherry albums. He attends Oakland University and kind of wishes he had a pet lobster.