Sidney Shank, Meredith College, North Carolina, United States

The first time I was not what you wanted,

you kissed me, and I

kissed you.


I the passion of bleached bone —

skeletal, seared in sun —

was not awake, when blood beats

red and flush

skin slides skin,

muscles taut,

muscles relax.

Spun from circadian sun,

not lightning strike.

No Juliet here,

wrapped in lover-lust;

just an unflappable fallacy,

and unromance,

and me,

flapping it in ’bye as you

drive away unsated.