Will Roby


I am at high tide. My skin crawls
up and down, pulled by the moon,
a balloon of skin over Galveston Island.
I am written in red ink on the ceiling
fan, I fly around the top of your room.

You wipe your lips and spit into the sink.
You live alone, with a picture of your father,
a long purple suit. Storm windows with their slats,
nothing but the beep and click of your mother's
tongue, buried now in Midland but no matter,

you remember: Sunday afternoon, the radio
up too loud, a tumbleweed inside you, tugging.
Your mother rattles, lungs caught together
as she crosses herself, spits out the window.
She picks dirt from a thumbnail.
You pack gauze into fist sized rolls,
plug up the tiny holes that stain your dress.

The sun sews heat in the room, no needle
and thread but friction and swish,
your feet a perfect arc; the new moon
like the television changing channels.
A woman passes on the street,
has wonderful pink skin you'd love to wrap
over yourself, over your head,
a little give when I push. And I push.

Location: Lubbock, Texas
Occupation: Full-time college student
Email: willroby@poetic.com
Publications: Rising, the Higginsville Reader, Karawane, Melic Review, etc.
Poetry Editor of: Communication Breakdown

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