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Matthew Anderson

Your Salt

Your salt.

The salt of you inside.

She gets tired of me repeating my order. She takes the cards from my hand. My mind.

I put my hand over hers.

Offer me an apple.

One apple.

Not anything else. The curves, the edges.

I remember everything. Talking to that apple.

Looking back

I wasn’t lightheaded,

I wasn’t thinking of jazz or

blues or rivers or winter. 

I was remembering

what I was when I was twenty,

the bright magnesium light of thinking,

too much of a hurry,

too much of my own talking to see that the

track had formed right

there, then, that I would see it only

later, on looking back.

Now there is only the wide of

the desert, the aperture held

open but nothing moves,

nothing to see

except pinyon and mesa and

sky and blue, no figure,

no one smiling back to me

under the shade of a tree,

my ear like a flange bent to the track,

listening for what comes next.

Matthew Anderson teaches in the Department of English at the University of New England, where he has been since 2001. He lives in Portland, Maine with his wife and three children.

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