FEVER 103

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Lying in bed
I am scared
I have grown

Tired of all
You have left
To say to me

Even if I have
Not yet heard
It all before

Late last night
I was scared
I was already

Tuning into
That hot little
Number sitting

Next to you
Ice cubes
Slowly melting

In their glass
I think I will
Have whatever

They’re having
That’s usually
How it starts

Isn’t it? I mean
One day you
Start tuning

Out the one
You promised
To love till death

Do you part
In order to let
The other

Narratives in
Voices so full
Of novelties

Tantalizing
Possibilities
You’d never

Be able to
Otherwise find
On your own

No not in a
Million years
You are so full

Of it now
Just listen
To that ever

So slightly
Shifting lilt
In your voice

As you lean in
To this sudden
Availability

Stirring within
You now after
All those stale

Years doing
You know what
Nagged by

You know whom
All of that
Softened now

By the gait
In your step
Renewing all

Those blood-
Engorged
Versions of

Selves you
Thought you’d
Never be able

To feel again—

ROSCOE, NY

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It was unplanned.
All afternoon, was it

Justin Theroux

who kept texting her
from Monticello

but all she wanted

was to go fly fishing
in the river, maybe

catch some trout,

something she
and her ex used to

love doing before

he threw her down
in the entry hall

and stomped on

her collar bone
with his work boots,

jealous and high

on coke because
she didn’t like

his woodcarving

enough, my friend
who dropped more

than 100K to fix up

his place—“dirty
money” is how her

ex put it, his way

of showing gratitude.
“Why can’t I get

over him?” she asked

while I turned over
more cards for her

week after week,

her shoulder still
killing her when she

let out some line,

catching only tiny
beauts she had to

throw back, feeling

some accomplishment
as she stood up to

her breasts in muddy

waters, careful not to
soak her waders

and lose her balance

while a trout the size
of a salmon rolled over

next to her, splashing

her with his tail
with no one around

to see or hear it—

Iggy Pop’s “I Wanna
Be Your Dog” cued up

on her playlist,

James Blood Ulmer
jamming on a tune

Skip James once sang—

my friend who grows
the sweetest pears

in the Hudson Valley—

hard green ones
hitting the ground

at regular intervals

with a thud before
they soften—the ones

she lets me take home

to watch them yellow
slowly on a plate

exported from China

from another century
on a screened-in

porch—sweetest

flesh I’ve ever sunk
my teeth into, all

of it unplanned

when she met up
with some locals

who drew her a map,

showing her where
the best and most

secret fishing spots

are—a treasure
map that she texted

to my phone, same

phone that I take
a selfie with a man

whose middle name

I’ve kept to myself—
so much hidden

in a simple name

and why I have taken
so much pleasure

filling his mouth

with an incomparable
sticky sweetness

neither my friend

nor all the locals who
fish around here

have a fucking clue.

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