Nine Months of Spring


Beneath rusted swings and burnt yellow slides

That curved between laughter and orange horizons

Laid her hand in his sweaty palm

She leaned her head on his undeveloped chest

Magnolias before they bloom,

Cotton, chaste

Red lava engulfed his cheeks


She used to play dress up

Sit on cement steps and braid my hair

Streaming down my back

Curling at my waist



They sat still until adolescence led them to steel lockers

And concrete pavements

Laced with gossip and used lighters,

Cigarette butts and discarded Black and Milds

Her chest grew larger, tilting her lips to his collarbone

It lingered there

Tingling through her spine

Down her back


Climbing her fingers until they hung around his neck

Tracing years of playground hugs

Her lips touched his skin softly


Eradicating one clothing article at a time


Her stomach fell into spring

Blooming with stretched skin,

Protruding belly button

Porcelain dolls like ghosts hung silently in closed closets

They would be used again

But never by her


The last of her childhood

Nested in lemonade stands and

Faded chalk that danced to the squares of



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