letter when is for wednesday; or how to count

by Elena Riley




you would destroy each other
you both read Lacan before I did


ok here:


my purple teeth streets
on your patched shoulder
when you fall over the brick stoops of nw
                  where we pretend to be afraid and important
drink as if not remembering will change the shape of things
gold fish in the green bottle & a paper crane in my skirt pocket
                   if this goes sour
but I hate sweet things,
which is why I’d rather be
sideways alongside you


this part:
        we shout sins until they form postcards
        papercut our tongues, papercut
your politics, papercut my wrist so you can
put your mouth on it, as if you charmed me, and you do
but not anymore,                                               I think.


I don’t ask this time, don’t indulge your narcissism
as you say, “you remind me of me of me, you know me?”
          or “don’t you know who I was before?”
                    “but shattering is my favorite,” you say or
did I say—saying I remember—don’t I? don’t you remember?




so when you start reading to me,
and I imagine my soft back,
                                               perfect, w the sheet
                                                               just so,
obsess, the toothpaste
                     in the left corner of your mouth (don’t you remember who I said I was?)
to remember you were disappointing.