Hannah Rego

Aubade, Belated


The small girl of you     you admitted to once     you admitted to your being

loud when you talked of cats      in love &      cats out of love

I couldn’t love a man

No one ever does    because man is a word     we use when we mean to leave

alone these smallest me’s      of girl or rain    in your eyes

there is only the desert shift to sky     nothing between but petroglyphs

nothing between two people ever      but sound     the tongue can dull     I know a way

to kiss without getting papercut     all you do is fold a corner      of the page

to mark it ancient     In the books you left     the dog ears belong to uncaged

hounds     They return in summer dark to ask me      to the woods

Out there a kiss means anything.

From the essay in which      two snakes enmesh

until they destroy each other     I pull a card     that reads a night of seduction


Who were you talking to,

little darling,

smallest glass of water for an ant?

That’s you in this story     a dew

Forgive me     I want

to be the scientist again     I cannot be

the leaf underside     Forgive me but      from you

I cannot turn away


Hannah Rego is a writer from Louisville, Kentucky. In 2016 they were awarded the Flo Gault poetry prize from Sarabande Books. They have attended residencies at Spalding University's Low-Res MFA and SAFTA through Sundress Publications. Their poetry appears in BOAAT, BOMB Magazine, and The Louisville Review. They live in Brooklyn and on twitter @hannahkalena.

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