By Hannah Nelson


On the front step

I asked for a cigarette and you asked

if I had anything to lace it with.


Summer in the city

began at that apartment

sweating wheezing grinding

working long hours at the park

in daylight I learned your face

but I knew you better in the dark.


Sweet Turkish coffee in breakable cups

Breathing on silence

but sunburnt august can deceive

and soon came my fall.


I failed at the most natural thing

Let's name it tame it cage it

I'd call it Ziya, Antalya, and the Sea.


And yes I am the Mediterranean princess drowning

glass after glass of cheap zinfandel

eyes smeared drunk

and this is not my home.


You stumbled toward the shore and said

I love this night but

I was mistaken

Tricked by broken English and the things you like.