by Tracy Mishkin

Some things I can negotiate, not
my best friend’s driveway. My tires flatten
her grass each Sunday. When I am early,
she appears in a white bathrobe, hairless
as an egg. Turning to retrieve her iridescent cap,
she does not hear me say that she is beautiful.

In these days before brain lesions begin
to hurt, we can sing camp songs, drink
six cups of tea. Often we sit outside so long
the moon appears, hanging like a tumor
from the sky. We are patio furniture,
motionless in twilight. I could grab
a bag of dirt, fill an old boot on her deck, spit
sunflower seeds over the laces to plant them.

In my country, we do not walk away
and leave our sisters in lowered coffins
for the backhoe’s scoop and dump.
For her, I will shovel the earth myself.

Tracy Mishkin is an MFA student in Creative Writing at Butler University. Her chapbook, I Almost Didn’t Make It to McDonald’s, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2014. Her work has appeared recently in Rat’s Ass Review, Little Patuxent Review, and Postcard Poems and Prose.