Staredown between the neon orange bottle
and my hand already cupped in anticipation.

This unfolding drama is what I do not tell you.
The story goes like this: I almost do and then

I don’t. Count to ten. Thing of the good things,
like mother taught you when you were young

and yet sad enough to die. I’ve been rehearsing
the good things for decades. Orange marmalade

and rich people’s lawns that water themselves,
my records from the 70s and the sepia freckles

that scatter across the nose of the man I love.
I’ll stay for that, I guess, and the staredown ends.

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