is a poet from Des Moines, Iowa. His poems have been published by New Ohio Review, North American Review, Ninth Letter, Split Lip Magazine, and Forklift, Ohio.
When she came over for the second time
she noticed a couple of old Schwinns along the back fence
that had probably been there for 20 years.
We rode along with few words and rusty squeals,
dust rubbing into our crotches,
on the left side of the has-been highway.
We rode fast,
me pretending that keeping up
wasn’t physically exhausting,
trying to forget the boxed wine and cubed cheese,
knees jabbing my stomach
at each rotation of the bicycle’s version of a clock
—something that could be slowed-down or sped-up
for a night like this.
She made her bike look like
a meticulously chosen movie prop,
biking with no hands as she tied her hair back,
and she noticed me staring at her,
so she stuck her tongue out and squinted,
crunching down her chin, so there we were
whipping by fields of soybeans
making stupid faces at each other,
only to turn onto a gravel road,
where it was fields of corn
but the same stupid faces.
And don’t try to tell me
you would have felt
the crash coming in that
pit you call a heart.