"Girls get tattooed better,” / because if we winced or if we whined, / you’d tell us to not be such a girl, / as if that was the worst thing to be. / I am a brick wall, southern exposure, / all stacked and standing. I am // not in the same room as you, / dig the ink into my bone over and / over. I am all four walls, motionless and / taking it, not like a man, taking it / like a girl, southern facing, better than you.
For Justin Webb
For the first time, the night after bonding in the woods. / For the second time, in my belly dancing skirt when I swallowed too much tequila / because I thought my uncle had been shot. / For the third time, after I was hit by that car while riding my bike / and I came to you. / For the fourth time, when I left before things got started / to go have coffee with my friends. // For the time when I returned from Ireland, when nothing happened. / For when we spent three hours trying to find an adverb. // I was learning my way around / from the north side of campus. / I was learning my way through your language. / I was learning how things don’t fit. / I was learning about the taste I couldn’t get out of my mouth, / was learning that tomatoes could be more remarkable / than I’d previously known. // For when you wrote to me on my birthday, / when you wrote to me in the middle of the night, / when you wrote to me from your new address, / when you wrote to me and then you didn’t anymore. // For the first time, after the woods.