Poetry by Robert Lamirande

The dashboard thermostat hits 101°,
and while this heat wave is nothing new,
lately it’s got people talking. For instance,
when I brush my teeth, my gums won’t stop bleeding;
syrup-thick swallows signal back to a 12-year-old
sex talk, when mom said AIDS came from sleeping
with someone who was sick:
see Ruthie; see Vicky; see Julie. 103°.
“How many people have there been?”
I wonder how many are still left to go –
sorry – I hope that didn’t sound vain to you,
you, who’s wind I’m chasing already,
ashes coursing upon the wake of empty freeway lanes.

But forget your ex, my ex, all names ending with an “E.”
Let’s take a cold shower. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
Wet hair feels so good on nights like these.

robertRobert Lamirande is a graduate of the University of Washington. He currently lives in Seattle, trading poetry for cigarettes and Thai food. He plays piano for the dark-folk/rap group, ‘Bagheera.’

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