record store date
neither of us had a player
or a needle to spare.
his stomach, full of flat hands
& mine with grubs.
it rained often that spring
& i made my legs as bare
as possible. shaving them
in the gummy bathtub.
Pink girl-razor smell.
i looked for nirvana because
they seemed old enough
to have records. stared curiously
at the schemes of symbols
album art yields: gritty space ships,
dancing bears, & close-ups
of beautiful girls. i collected them
for future references, memorizing
band names. repeating, pink floyd
& the doors & the misfits
like an incantation. i followed him
as he lifted each disk.
held them up as if
they were old friends.
why did i believe him? to be fifteen
is to trust everyone's hands too much
& your own not at all. sometimes
at restaurants he would hand feed me.
stroke me head. i wanted to be glass.
i wanted to be a bell. kissing me
every few feet. sublime playing
on the store's speakers.
then, a beaded door
at the back of the shop
with a sign that said 18+.
he lied, saying he'd gone back there
many times. i nodded,
like he'd said something sacred.
cassettes lay in lines
forming a dark grin. i thought,
don't look at us. outside
it poured. we circled the store again.
no where else to take
my need to be filled
which is of course also
a need to emptied. he took my wrist
& said, "let me tell you
let me tell you" & he thronged
my face with everything
i already knew.