Three months in I started eating meat;
sausage, bacon, prosciutto thin as glass.
I cared more about you liking me
than I did about the pig.
“I can’t feed myself when you’re gone,” I said.
You laughed, but that night for dinner
I’d had an ear of corn and a bag of Cesar salad.
Most nights I’d rather drink than cook.
Lacryma Christi, the wine you ordered
on our second date. All minerals, no fruit.
I just remember where it came from,
Mount Vesuvius, Tears of Christ. I sat
across from you, my stomach full of flesh
drinking the ashes of the dead.
D Flat Is Always Trying to Resolve Itself
My tooth fell out during dinner again.
I’m keeping it in a jar on my desk.
I’m sorry, this kind of thing
is always happening to me.
Remember when I was happy?
Before I stabbed the couch,
and starting spending nights at home
taking tepid baths and drinking Spanish wine
because you said it was the best I could afford?
I don’t. All I remember is when
you wished I could have everything I wanted.
I wish that I wanted a room with orange walls
and a brain-damaged cat. I wish
that you wanted an anti-social stripper
who hates her day job.
Yesterday I got high and listened
to a story on NPR about tinnitus.
The worst thing about the ringing, the afflicted
man said, was that the notes in his ears were at odds.
D flat on the left always tried to resolve itself
with C on the right.
I don’t know about resolution,
but this hole in my mouth
isn’t getting any smaller.
When Love Goes Wrong
I want to marry for money
instead of attention.
I want to count the things I care about.
I am tired of men who put
their heads on my chest,
tell me my heart is beating their name,
then leave me for caring too much.
If someone tells you that being
a showgirl will make you more attractive
they’re lying. I’ve tried it.
The glitter prevents intimacy,
gets into everything and never
comes off, spreads like an infection.
When I fall in the pool
with all my clothes on it will be
because an Olympic diver pushed me.
In court I’ll sing show tunes, wear fishnets.
My wedding ring will be
a diamond tiara.
If you have never cried while listening
to “Time After Time,” in a deli while
waiting to buy a can of chili,
I don’t want to talk to you.
I had that fantasy today where
the elderly woman standing in front
of me said I could go ahead of her
in line and when I refused, she held me.
I am constantly trying to buy you things;
overpriced chocolate, Thai basil, that book
about what to do when your girlfriend forgets
how to ride the subway alone.
As if any of it makes up for this.
As if there were no more to do
than open my arms and say here, here
Sarah Bridgins is a writer and performer living in Brooklyn. She works in publishing, and her poems and stories have appeared in Bone Bouquet, Thrush, Monkeybicycle, Pear Noir!, and InDigest, among other journals. She was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize.