For Michelle

by Lauren Milici

This damp earth is home to nothing.
Tulips, crushed under the weight of fallen snow.
Feral bones, abandoned. Picked clean.
The bouquet left on the bottom step.
When the house gives way to wood rot,
light a match. Collect the embers.
In the blue dark, there are no stars.
A howl from beneath the trees
says, no. No one can see you.
No creature ever wants to be seen.
Instead, take these seeds. Swallow them.
Remember: there is nothing holier
than a full moon, or the glint of a pocketknife
half-buried in the grass.
The lake keeps still, holding its breath—
It wants, as I want. It can’t help but wonder.

Lauren Milici is a Jersey-born, Florida-raised poet and writer based in West Virginia. She has an MFA in creative writing from West Virginia University. When she isn’t crafting sad poems about sex, she’s either writing or shouting into the void about film, TV, and all things pop culture.