Katharine Johnsen


I returned to retrieve some towels I left for trash in her empty
            apartment, furniture's impression lingering

on the carpet. High spring—the way May should look
            on a postcard—it was so warm inside, her heat

left on, fans turning; what she would not let me
            adjust. She wanted the thin bath sheets, frayed

and threadbare. So I went back, filled my arms
            with them, bringing her all I was able to carry.

I locked the door behind me though I could have left it
            open—her things moved out—and kept the key.

Katherine Johnsen is an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, where she is the Bernice Kert Fellow and on the staff of Ecotone. Johnsen earned her BA from Emory University.

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