Take Two

by nicolecallihan

Dear Tulsa—
It wasn’t the storms that drove me out of town.
Those, I’ve carried in my body: the clouds, swell of sky,
curve of a ditch for shelter. I can’t remember what I remember
and what I only think I remember. All those Mikes ago. Fat Mike.
Dead Mike. Gay Mike. Mike Mike. O to sit at that little place
on 36thStreet eating ramekin upon ramekin of queso, to stand
in line for the Phantasmagoria, to sleep like a teenager
and love like a teenager and want like a teenager, pour
packets and packets of Sweet-n-Low in coffee, and cry,
cry that howling cry, hurt that awful hurt. If I tried, and I try not to,
but if I did, I could feel the ditch still, feel the dead grass
on my bare arms and bare legs and watch the storm move over me,

so certain that it would take me, so surprised that it didn’t.