Sweet Hereafter

I am in a relationship with David Berman. I no longer feel amazing brushing my teeth. The third sentence is we are intricate disasters, we’re silly & awkward & it’s a fire. The wind is kissing the shit out of us. I ask a bus driver what’s the best way to get home, find the bedroom & never leave it unless you really have to pee. I bring myself to look at the silence in the refrigerator.


My father calls me son in a text message. The second sentence is a holiday with a history of fucking people. We meet & talk more than we drink. We light up under a pale blue umbrella. We find a painted circle between streets & don’t stop running around it for at least a minute. I want to love more. I think about me because I’m constantly asking. I think about you because I think I always will.


The first sentence is a planet on the fifth floor. Tambourines melt into laundry baskets after they were lovers. Lovers swallow vegan burritos after they were beers on the floor. I wake up sad & sick & silent with a hard-on for the ghost of a ghost of a ghost. The night is I make eighty steps into forty, breath out no one’s name up or down, come in & keep coming back.


It is thirty degrees & I don’t love you anymore. The second sentence is a date at the first vegan bar in America at noon. Her name is the same as my leasing agent’s, the guy who helped us when we were in Berkeley, where we lived together from the first day, when we couldn’t not sit in the parking lot & drink every afternoon. I wash my hands in the dark with the city behind me. I keep checking my phone for a green blinking dot that means I love you.


I don’t now what the title is—I’m not even looking. The second sentence is a hospital an hour away. I take eighty steps down, kiss the rain through exit door glass & go back up again. It’s a sin to not keep sinning. I want to ask you what’s your favorite state? I want to know what I mean by that.


I have crossed legs & it’s the beginning of the week. The second sentence has a heart if you can find it out of a living. Mail reminds me of the food carts between us. I check to make sure the way I feel alive means something to me. I love you because I love somebody else.

Parker Tettleton is a vegan Leo living in Portland, Oregon. He is the author of OURS MINE YOURS (Pity Milk Press 2014), GREENS (Thunderclap Press 2012), & SAME OPPOSITE (Thunderclap Press 2010) . More information can be found here.
Artwork: “Inverse Universe” series by Sean Deckert.
Friday, May 19th 2017