Mimicry

Charles Kell

How she takes

his hands

turns them over

 

in the new

November snow.

The white

 

lighthouse

at the tip

of the window-

 

less sea

waiting for

the two

 

to descend—

I kept

wickedness

 

at bay back

then kept

in my worn

 

coat’s pocket

the photo

from twenty

 

years ago

keep, now, roaches

locked in

 

the cupboard

hear their scuttle

as the wind

 

hits the bricks.

I, like them,

wander

 

in small circles

nowhere

here my rusty

 

nail my tin

cup my father’s

house

 

has many 

rooms I ran

through once

 

he is now

dead he

is bones

 

in the sand

these were

my sister’s

 

hands I tell

you how

I wanted

 

to be them

tracing

the curves of

 

my smaller

fingers I love

cold water

 

how she 

dipped them

in salt, touched

 

each one

with wet strands

of snow-covered

 

grass

Charles Kell is the author of Cage of Lit Glass, chosen by Kimiko Hahn for the 2018 Autumn House Press Poetry Prize. His poetry and fiction have appeared in the New Orleans Review, The Saint Ann’s Review, Kestrel, Columbia Journal, The Pinch, and elsewhere. He is Assistant Professor of English at the Community College of Rhode Island and associate editor of The Ocean State Review. He recently completed a PhD at the University of Rhode Island with a dissertation on experimental writing, criminality and transgression in the work of James Baldwin, Rosmarie Waldrop, Joanna Scott and C.D. Wright.

©2018 HighShelfPress. 

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