If you laugh at some sacred object you change it. Useful onerosity.

Disbelieving and drinking are always present tense. I mean
what is hard and what responds—my horse and her water. I can be
anywhere, I used to think, happy.

Why would anyone travel when you could be in a field
with one person?

When you left, I swallowed a lemon whole.
I didn’t know what else to do. I knew
to bless but how among the swanky,
dishonest slobs! I do not say these things about you. “I
am the auto salesman and lóve you.” Dear!

I consider not becoming a madwoman. I love a white sky.
Remember when Texas was Mexico? Remember when California
was Mexico? Were we ever wrong in what we believed.

The fire pit has been relocated to a desert museum
barred from the public though it’s made of straw and guest towels. Here,

a woman sings me every lyric of KING OF THE ROAD. She
is the mayor of Houston. She knows only one Bucky
and he’s dead. What is it that allows you to know symposia

from um—ain’t you the poet? Don’t leave.
I carry heavy burdens, jrs, carry more than one and have only
ever belonged to a frat across the hall. Perhaps, no, maybe.
The last time I drank all day
I tried to pronounce metallurgist and walked home the wrong way.

Lorn. As in forsaken, desolate, bereft, lovelorn, forlorn. Archaic.
The imperfect, tense with fascination, alive and unmoving.
Allure of my name, spirit heavy. Lure, heavy with spirits.
Gold l’or but with an Au. The lore, all citrus. My name
the verb hidden in the suitcase in my closet.


LAUREN HILGER is the author of Lady Be Good (CCM, 2016). Awarded the Nadya Aisenberg Fellowship from the MacDowell Colony, where she was a fellow in 2012 and 2014, her work has been chosen for Harvard Review Online's Poetry Pick and has appeared in Gulf Coast, Kenyon Review Online, and Massachusetts Review, among other journals. She serves as a poetry editor for No Tokens.

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