INTERLUDES

2nd March 2021

Words by Isabelle Bouvier · Artwork by Emma W.

EMMA_W_INTERLUDES.jpg

She & I walked and walked,
our words as easy and steady as our footfalls--
interlaced, painting the fields.
I stole a sprig from the forsythia
and in the weeks between us I have
watched it die slowly (suddenly)
on my desk.


We were neither of us real,
just kids licking our last taste of freedom.
My body wordlessly evaporated before you.


When this is over meet me where the lilacs grow,
hold me tight so I can let you go.

-


Our feet are wrenched from the earth - scattering -
I tumble in the wind beside a golden leaf and ask them,
How do you not get motion sickness?


I could ask the same of you, they reply, and dissolve into dust.
I hope I fly high enough to see the cities below me
and of course as I think that, my toes catch flame.


It’s thrilling, at first, until I look down and recognize nothing.
I am afraid, my heart says, and the moon smiles.
I am alone, I am nowhere.


The moon becomes unbearably beautiful against the naked trees
but I’ve forgotten how to cry.
Worlds below, flower buds stretch their arms toward me
and laugh
(and laugh).

-

Each evening I light candles and knit
years of green yarn into a scarf (rectangles
are the only shapes I know anymore)


Each night the cat claws the stitches
apart, wildflower petals dripping
from his teeth


Each morning I wind the yarn into
a neat ball, ready to begin the scarf
again with the setting sun


Every day until the cat is
gone, I guess

Isabelle Bouvier lives in Amherst, Massachusetts and is a senior at Amherst Regional High School. She attended Juniper Institute for Young Writers in 2018 and 2020 and has written short plays performed by the Amherst Regional High School Theater Department. She also studies classical voice and loves to perform.

Emma W. lives in Toronto. The first print issue of her zine @pinkrabbitfootdiary will be available soon.