Snow in June

Jane Wong
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Months after ending
my engagement, I woke 
with my ears plugged up, 
stoppered like a bath, chain 
dangling a rusty tongue. 
Television static filmed 
my cochlea like milk 
I can’t drink. I couldn’t even 
hear the massive truck wrestling 
by outside, splintered logs stacked 
atop each other like all 
my lovers. I was pressed cider, 
leaking mash. I gulped, 
I yawned false at first, then 
grew very, very tired. My jaw 
unlocked nothing, hinged 
disappointment each 
time. I shook my ears side 
to side, imagined warm wax 
pouring out like the maple syrup 
he used to drown waffles in, puffed 
squares resembling the indecipherable 
garden boxes he built me. When I left, 
he demanded I pull my starts out. 
Those are most certainly yours. 
It was horrible to yank them up,
roots kicking like something caught
in my throat. Worms encircled 
my wrist like a prom date I never 
had. You dodged a bullet, everyone says, 
and I hear you lodged a bull – horns 
tearing up our walls, snout slapping 
the bed with sentient fury. I lived there. 
I lived in what I thought was love,
lumbered. It’s cottonwood season
our neighbor said to me, snow in June! 
Isn’t it something? She touched my arm 
like a piece of mail she’d been expecting.
I couldn’t tell if she knew I was leaving. 
It was relentless. The cottonwood tails 
hailing all over the house, feverish 
fluff. Like some invisible beast 
gutted a thousand rabbits all at once.

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