Erin Martin




I am going to the supermarket.
I want to buy a late dinner and something to drink.
Somewhere by the fancy cheese I spot your red windbreaker.
I hide in frozen breakfast foods. You walk to the dairy aisle.   
I bite my tongue so I don’t approach you with puns. Way to 
milk the sale today, huh? I always knew you were this cheesy.
Peering around the concentrated juice, I stop. I stare.
The girl you left me for is with you. I look at her.
She looks plain. A nice face, if you’re into asymmetry.  
By midnight, I remember her as having a gold tooth, 
right in front. Dead and moldy looking, it stuck out when she
smiled at you in front of t-bone steaks.  
I sleep. I wake. Her hair has changed. The gray-brown 
of it flusters on her head. A bad perm like rotten lettuce.   
A sickness trails her like opening the refrigerator after being
away. All those vegetables black and liquid.
You hold your breath to kiss her.   
When she sleeps you spray her down 
with mildew-busting shower cleanser. She dreams of bleach.
Days go by. She becomes a terrible fish.
Bleeding and hooked, she has leapt from her
water to be by your side. You in the ice cream
section with a gutted trout. Last night I dreamed
about a cocky serial killer. When the police came
he had a gigantic, silvery fish on a tree stump
outside in a clearing. He finessed his way through the whole
interview. The police turned away. One of them doubled back and
asked if he could help clean the fish. For some reason this broke
the murderer. He kept saying how close he had come.
I don’t know if the fish ever got cleaned.  

To flamenco
in the town square
beside the fountains
where pennies drown
To make snow angels
during summer and pretend
we wake every day
to haloes in the grass
To stand in checkered kitchens
pouring glasses of pink 
wine we drink in 
wicker rocking chairs
To get persimmons
from the graveyard keeper
eat them on the city bus
stained with fruit 
To grow suddenly old
in a café in Montmartre
where a woman made of oil paint
spreads her legs forever
To steal cigarettes
from a harelipped man
who fills a broken jukebox
with quarters from the bar
To dream we’re matadors 
fighting in Madrid
our scarlet capes
our greenest pants