14: Oct 2016 #17 - Developing Photos

Authored by Suzanne Highland

Developing Photos

by Suzanne Highland

                Abigail at the architectural salvage

Behind my sister, propped up, is a pair
of five-foot gold-painted wings, discarded

(and from where?) against an armoire
also for sale. A water drop on the lens

or something: her features tremble
into a continuous, headshaking no. We’re always

against something, she and I, made shaped by what we are
not. No, she’s not a handmaid, not the biblical wife

of one of God’s men, armed with peacemaking bread,
frightened, in love; yes, we are; no, not even in love

should any woman turn to smudge. When you
said you wanted to crawl into my mouth

and be me, I thought: a lost form
seeking itself out. My sister used to steal my shirts

and dresses. God’s Abigail told the man she loved
that God would make him a lasting dynasty

if he avoided unnecessary bloodshed
and he married her. What is unnecessary anyway.

               Photo you took

After sex, maybe, your hand a star
on my back, constellations you made

from a pen and freckles. God—
how could I not fall for that cosmic shit, those goose bumps?

Look at what we turn into. And this one:
your new lover’s back

and a dollar bill on it. Both of us
pale against you at different times.

It’s about the polarization,
how what I miss comes back as its opposite.

How I don’t have time to miss it properly first. Saying
this is who I loved and what we looked like

against each other. I, without,
submerge myself in red dark room light

and come up a different shade of red.
If I can’t be Aphrodite I’ll be Venus.

If I can’t be free I’ll be the darkest room.
My attempts to hold all of it.