|Arsenic Lobster poetry journal||
if i’m warm beside you, i must be a heater. sometimes
i’m a heater and sometimes i’m a photograph: when i can stay.
then i love you like a mouth, a mouth that loves you like a hand.
then i fade so gentle you want to cover me with a black cloth.
i must be like the galleries—rows of frames we peer into
and step away— or i should learn to close like one.
i must be a heater on the fritz when you complain about the heat.
you remove your clothes, close your mouth, and start humming
like a busted pipe.
there is a small desert cactus. it throws little fuchsia tantrums
like quick fires you can spot on a night dark enough.
it must be a beacon for me on those nights, a way through
the shrubs on the backs of your hands, when i am not.
About Laura Theobald