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I watch you
chase the shade
from the mulberry tree
which is done bearing
fruit for the season
fading stains on
the sidewalk where you sit
sliding scuff bottomed
milk crates west to east
the daily angle changing
with deepening summer
pineapple Inca Kola bottles
piling around your feet
waiting out the heat
i’ve never seen
you sleep


in my fantasy
i keep a perfect list
of the cars who come for you
annotated with dates and times
the frequency of each man’s visit
whether they come in groups
if you are smiling when you come back
and you always come back


I wish I could tell
you how beautiful
I think you are when
you wear the green wig
which lights your skin
like a second sun

despite and because
I have seen you

crawling from backseats
of men’s cars out into
the heat of the July dusk

but we do not talk

only wave
from time to time
when we can’t avoid
catching eyes
when we lapse
in our pretending
and are forced to fill
the space we share
with apologies
embarrassments which
float like cottonwood spores
across the street

sorry to see you
sorry to be seen
sorry to be you
sorry to have been

Gordon St. Raus

Gordon St. Raus peaked at 15 and is mostly held together by masking tape.

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