Jul 17, 2002 at 12:00 am
by Matthew Olzmann, Hamtramck

She thinks I'm too young to understand.
After impact, flames look for survivors.
Small toys deflate across a damp road.
At rapid rates breath can collapse.

What keeps dropping and won't look up?
This heavy lung, a melting wrist.
The Chevy's hood like folded crust.
Nighttime, electric, all lit up side down.

If she could reach me I would stop.
If I shut my eyes, you disappear.
Something opens, I hear it cringe.
Even the trees try pulling back.

Is it chance that we meet like this?
Mother dressed in steam.
The stranger, a streetlight, Joy road.
That hissing sound everywhere.

–Matthew Olzmann, Hamtramck

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