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EMILY AS WRITTEN BY WILLIAM HEYEN

When I learned to understand death,
I came to realize that I had not been
learning about life at the same time.

I knew how to pronounce the names
that every native tribe had for crossing
over, but since they had almost all crossed

over already, I had no reason to use them.
I shot a pony.  I said every word for death
I knew afterwards.  I buried many things

with that young horse.  When Emily
first saw me with the gun, she was silent
& now she is loud, quite beautifully so.

 

 

 

EMILY AS A THICK TRAIL

Everyone buys grapes,
but Emily buys them
knowing neither of us

likes to eat grapes,
but that we can use them,
their representation,

their ability to lead
a person to where fruit
can be destroyed without

absolute consumption.
When I think of Emily
at Target, buying only tarp

& grapes, my sense
of humor is sharpened
to an extreme point of joy.

 

 

 

EMILY AS WE HAD TO SEARCH THE PALACE FOR LAUGHTER

It echoed
to taunt us,

the last time
either Emily
or myself
let loose
without guard

or thought
of the children

& when
we were
knocked

down by
both of them
naked, in capes,
escaped

onto the lawn,
we knew

that all locks
would now
be useless.

We relaxed
into that
fear
without
elegance.

 

 

EMILY AS EACH LURCH

The learning
was a rush.
After that sprawl

we looked
ridiculous,
but we looked

ready to leap
again.  Each feast
of adrenaline

we found
we found
in each other

& that revelation
felt random,
felt precious.

We sweat
all over that
loveliness.

 

 

 

EMILY AS A DARK SHIP

There is enough of a fairy
in death that I believe we might float
on a tide momentarily before

we join the meaning of the river.
It will take me no dive to get wet
as I will already be everywhere then

& though I will need no comfort
from Emily again, I know she will
approach my body as if I do.

 

 

 

EMILY AS MY GESTURE’S ERROR

I was a terrible glacier.
I rose above the water
completely for Emily.
Nobody wants a giant
cliff made of ice.  I healed
no part of her like that.
All she needed was enough
deep longing to feel love
like a shifting temperature.
All I needed to do was
exist long enough to do
that.  I made a mess
out of my selfish display.

 


 

 

 

[Darren C. Demaree’s poems have appeared, or are scheduled to appear in numerous magazines / journals, including the South Dakota Review, Meridian, The Louisville Review, Diagram, and the Colorado Review. He is the author of As We Refer To Our Bodies (8th House, 2013), Temporary Champions (Main Street Rag, 2014,) The Pony Governor (After the Pause Press, 2015,), and Not For Art Nor Prayer (8th House, 2015). He is the Managing Editor of the Best of the Net Anthology, and currently lives and writes in Columbus, Ohio with his wife and children.]

 

Copyright © 2015 by Darren C. Demaree, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.