From the Archive: Chelsea Coupal (CAROUSEL 40)
I picture myself sometimes, slim
as I was then, walking in, stripping
down, lying down in that dirt-morning
light, hungover, and nausea tucked
under my mind like an old note.
I didn’t mind those mornings: click
of dried contacts, tumbleweed
stomach, and the sun pouring
through bedroom windows
slowly. Before the farmhouse,
you lived in a trailer
with walls so thin I swear
you could see through them.
Hardly a yard, just pasture, and cattle
peering in, curious as trick-or-treaters.
You woke early to work: feed cows,
move bales, study seed openers. The rhythm
of heavy equipment shushing around
in the background, behind an alarm clock
song, low volume. Held between that
scribble of tin, we loved each other
while dust fell around us, silver
and squinting and gently — leftover
confetti, dead and then reanimated again.