by Christopher Citro
There were some of us going to become
musicians. Some standing in the blue dark
beneath lake trees as stars emerged. Some of us—
I don’t know what some of us were thinking—
for proof the lives we’ve lead since then.
I’m learning the creaks of this new house,
grow a neuron for each new one. The cat helps.
The snow on the hill lights up this side.
By night, dark shapes pass across the ground.
Sure deer, but also something more uncertain.
If I shut a cupboard they stop. If I’m very still
they move on. Some evening we were all
sitting around a picnic table in a park talking
about what we always seemed to have time
to talk about, amazed by each other’s presence.
My brain-dough cookie-cut each time one of you
opened your mouth. Everyone I’ve ever met
in life I’ve compared to you and found lacking.
Here new friend. Take my hand. We don’t
trust one another yet. Message me and
maybe we’ll meet for a drink. My feelings
come in shapes. Stairs on the outside of
an apartment complex. Mossy river stones.
Christopher Citro is the author of If We Had a Lemon We’d Throw It and Call That the Sun (Elixir Press, 2020), winner of the 2019 Antivenom Poetry Award, and The Maintenance of the Shimmy-Shammy (Steel Toe Books, 2015). His poetry appears in Ploughshares, Iowa Review, the 2018 Pushcart Prize Anthology, Crazyhorse, Missouri Review, Best New Poets, Gulf Coast, Pleiades, Denver Quarterly, Smartish Pace, and Alaska Quarterly Review. His creative nonfiction appears in Boulevard, The Southeast Review, Quarterly West, The Florida Review, Essay Daily, Passages North, Bellingham Review, and Colorado Review. He teaches creative writing at SUNY Oswego and lives in Syracuse, New York.