The 2River View 23.4 (Summer 2019)

Bree A. Rolfe

A litany of bad decisions

Part One:  Omens

The only remaining
correspondence between
the two of us—a New York
Times article about Marfa
and a reply of yippee.

Jon Krakauer’s Under the Banner
 of Heaven on audiobook—
Mormonism, blood
atonement a six hour
drive through desert.

The first gallery with photographs
of Katrina’s destruction paired
with poems from children left
in her wake. Something beautiful
repurposed from storm
but still destruction.

Part Two: Take it All Back, Take it All Back

Some farm-to-table restaurant
with a name that involved
chicken and electricity
where you bring your own wine.
A loud table of sophisticated
middle-aged couples, tipsy and deep,
deep in conversation. Us, silent,
draining everything we brought.

A bar after, a folk singer on a tour,
finishes his set and we talk
too long about Club Passim.
All of your drinks on my tab—
scotches piled upon scotches.

The couple staying in the apartment
next to us: you tell them
you’re from Brooklyn and I say
but you’re from Connecticut.
An invitation back to their place
for wine that feels like a proposition.

A Milky Way themed air stream
trailer that sells grilled cheese—
you screaming at me from a bean bag
chair, everything misshapen
in black light, and so twisted, I walk out
and back to our rental alone
through pitch-black streets
with no real sidewalks. 

Who’s going to love the dying girl?

It all unravels: a smashed phone
a disconnected call, an overturned
coffee table, a locked bathroom,
chunks of my hair, unmoored.

Part Three: Aftermath

Triplicates of paperwork.
A gas stop, a guy on a Harley
with a sympathetic look
and then cheap sunglasses.

A legion of bugs sacrificed
on my windshield with no substance
in the world other than sheer
will to scrub them off. 

Six hours to forget:

I’ll leave you in a shallow
grave in West Texas.

Bree A. Rolfe has appeared in 5AM, Chorus: A Literary Mixtape, and Redpaint Hill Anthology Mother is a Verb. web site

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