Editor’s Note: “Resolution” seemed to be the perfect theme to fit our last Monthly Contest of the year. Likewise, this piece is beautiful, profound, and wowed every member of the committee—the perfect poem to round out a great year of submissions that have brought true insight for each prompt. We hope this poem will bring you a bit of resolution, whatever it may be, as you push through the end of the semester!
—Bailey Tulloch, R2 Monthly Contest Committee Head
by Ian Morell
Since July she’s appeared before me,
always after the bright morning
bile has settled, the meticulous coating
of each tooth. Words of bone
white light crackle through
her fingertips, caressing
my neck like blades and
Eyes shut I can find you dancing,
swimming through jet lounges.
She reminds me of you without
the broken cul-de-sac tattoo.
You move both time and sky
the way dad used to lie
and take my splinters
out with a knife; you rise
to fall or maybe it is all
a misunderstanding like those poor
migrating, minding their business.
Her technicolor spit, a wild mix
of ash and berries; and you…
pores dripping soft hellfire mixing
mind with action.
Was it you or her
at the Tremont
who finally spoke--
An orange hospice house
is the only thing I can imagine anymore.”