Harlequin Frames

Harlequin Frames

while deciphering spatter, I remember
your squinting, your pondering,
& the magnetics of twiddling fingers
longing to outstretch

you said your memories of the 70s
looked a lot like the movies,
the kind you should only watch
while listening through headphones

there’s a lot of crimson in your final scene,
like the red coat of horror, the pranks,
the overreaching, the hyperbole,
the pinprick promise we made

you always said a good film left you
questioning, & I wasn’t the answer
but you painted me as one
just the same

I read nothing between
the lines on your wrists,
or your scrawling in the sand
but the sound of leaky faucet now haunts

if I can collect all this bloodshed,
mold it together, form you back again,
I’d still end up with a thousand piece pie,
an enigmatic anomaly in khaki

a brother in ink who called it quits,
admirer of springtime blushing
& the shape of my muttering lips;
a shining constellation

in the darkness that is mundanity,
a scratch on the negative, a quarter
rubbed on a Polaroid that develops
after death as a blob, a spectre

a reason for contemplating insanity
as repetition, as a palindrome,
as a mystery I’ll never solve
that grows cold
the longer I go without seeing you

but I’ll write unsent letters to you
& watch all our favorites on mute
so I can conjure your words out of flickering mouths

Published by Jennifer Patino