after Olga Broumas

you ask if I ever loved a man, you ask me casual
and I spin through threads of names biting my hand
throating my knuckle like a knot, you catch my pause
and we blaze in protective anger, I shake my head

puzzled, remembering, no, no, I claim no love over and over
and then we kiss cradling others’ names inside our chests
we forget who we should love, beer cans shining like jewels

stranded in the gravel driveway like a diamond necklace
I wish the fuck had been one-faceted, crunched as aluminum
stomped under feet when she comes to you at 4 am

with a prayer in her fingers she hits her heartbeat on the window
clasping the necklace you bought her counting on love like a rosary

and now you say no, no, this is out of my character
but I have to write this down so we can grow into better women

because such stories are dangerous,
nine million loves have burned for less