strange city of asphalt       and perpetual construction

better every time, the people think

I sleep in a hotel across from another

            mine is barely adequate but the other is large and lush

                                    a fishbowl

I prefer the barely adequate

cigarette burns on the edge of the tub

a broken faucet 

                        I’ll mime bathing instead

I’ll swim through bubbles that aren’t

too few pillows

a broken phone I only use as a weird paperweight

I feel hidden here as if burrowed under soft earth                   where no one can find me

and I imagine there are squirrels in the walls

            keeping me company in my temporary hibernation

maybe I’ll stay here till winter

ground hard as rock in the northern Midwest

then head north from Minneapolis

                                                            in search of snowfall

                                                            with its heavy embrace

                        as I lie still in a snowbank

                        flakes touch me, fall 

                        stars bathe in the blue veins

                        beneath my skin

                                                I’m plugged in

                                                ready to be seen from space

                                                ready to envelop the stars flowing through my veins

                                                                        to admit they exist

                                    then, unfettered and somewhat footloose

under aurora borealis

                                                I join a herd of origami reindeer

                                                            massage my tender head against theirs

                                                            give butterfly kisses with my eyelashes

                                                            rub noses

                                    one of them has a message of love 

for me in its belly

there are so many ways

to unfold

Liana Kapelke-Dale is a poet and ATA Certified Translator (Spanish to English). She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Language and Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin Law School. She is the author of Seeking the Pink (Kelsay Books) as well as two poetry chapbooks. Her poetry has been featured in myriad journals, and she has work forthcoming in Roi Fainéant and Shoreline of Infinity. Liana lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with her lovely pointer-hound mix, Poet.

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