There’s any number of archaeological wonders
hogging my blankets each morning;

plaster Pompeii casts of the scratch of your beard
on my back, or our hopeful replicas of the kissing Hasanlu lovers.

I collect these skeletons before you wake,
each new umbrous statue of you like

a reiterating mewl or clang or drip or tick
of some broken appliance, a faucet, a clock.

It’s a sort of hoarder’s neurosis to catch delight in these
but I like the loud drip or clack or hiss of what I have,

the clock, an A.C. unit, the announcement
of the coffee pot, our pairs arranged on secret shelves

like salt-and-pepper shaker sets, ceramic and steel
or glass and waxy, the one with the suns or pursed lips

or the wet hair and bonfire smoke. How many effigies
make a shrine? I don’t mind crowding them into the dust.

This is what I have, a kind of faith;
Our sheet-wrapped and shut-eyed doppelgängers,

today’s bodies and yesterday’s strangers.
I’ve gathered, too, the bones of the old woman

who pointed her long finger to the sky, said,
look, don’t worry; there he is, there he is, there he is.



Julie Lunde is a writer in Brooklyn. She is a recipient of the Arch Street Press Prize for her essay ‘The Plural of Fish.’ Her poetry and prose have appeared in IthacaLit, Underwater New York, The Allegheny Review, and more. Visit her website.



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