Hello There

(for Zach)

My room orders despite its mess, it confines

these walls, these walls;

I’ve had the song on repeat all day,

I think the neighbors are sick of you

(I know my best-friend was, until—)

I’ve read so many poems

celebrating photographs and records;

But you know what? It’s okay, though:

a cellphone snapshot and your favorite mp3

off a pirate Russian website

fit you perfectly: digital phantoms,

a script of pulses like a heartbeat

that drums out from my fissured chest.

And I don’t even have that receipt

from when we went to lunch;

I’ve kept you in the breast pocket

of that coat that’s too heavy to wear,

and it’s okay, though,

I’ll mix vodka into sherbet and

I’ll wash it down with Sprite:

a more adult incarnation

of a picnic elixir; Summertime, and I remember

being twenty, and you might as well have been Dan

from back when I was the one too young to understand love’s end.

You suggested a road trip to Los Angeles

a heavy dose of freeway spaces and

we could find our own rhythm

along the sun-bleached guardrails,

the heavy green signs

that sag along the roadside.

You’ve been stuck in reverse so long

I guess you’re used to driving like that;

it’s okay, though;

then you squeezed the trigger,

and hit your mark,

and me already bleeding,

red drips from my hands and all I do is

sigh instead of scream.

It’s only because I’m so numb;

I wish you were here to kiss

my sunburned back, red from

being out all day in California sun…

I think I’ll finally pick up my room

and take a road trip in that coat, too

thick for any but your mountain regions;

I’ll leave at midnight with a CD that

plays just one track and sometime

before dawn

I’ll find you.