Syracuse, Lullaby, V. 1

by Alexa Doran

At 16 I made love between the beetles and dead grass
of St. Mary’s Cemetery. I had no questions. I said trace
me again. At 17 I cradled my car wash manager’s come
in that same cemetery, the hush of blue lights on his dash
steady as the graves looking in. I didn’t need to be loved. 
Just wanted. I want to sit on that stir of wet earth off East
Genesee Street, surrounded by the slow erode of stone, 
in the yellow soft of my six dollar skirt and cry for the things
I cried for then. Instead I watch the flowers you bought me 
die in the kitchen. I flip to the back of the book. I listen for 
the surface of the sun. As if that amount of warmth meant 
that amount of comfort. It doesn’t. And I rub my tongue down
the Latinate vertebrae of that holy word resuscitate, and 
clobber everything I’ve ever felt into those inky chains of time, place.

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