Cancer: dolphin love & Crab Pot by Len Kuntz

dolphin love

i lose you    in winter melon soup    under a broth of cloud cover    ginger slices floating  where your    eyes once did    no chance for extradition    the weight of absence and imbalance    prepping a slow fade    to nowhere    i find a hairline    fracture in the china    resembling lost nerve    my spoon clanging like a warped    church bell    swinging lonesome as    a weed in concrete     streetlight shining down    awaiting an answer    or your reappearance    which never comes    even a shallow joy    could get me    through tonight    suspend and arrest me    the way you’d laugh    like a dolphin in love    you said    i may be a cancer    but    i’m never getting it    fuck that    i’ll smoke when i want    there’s too much life left    too much you and me left    but now the stock is    cold and congealed    a sump for suckers    and non-believers    while you are    parsing the ether tubeless    hospital gown rotting    in the dirt    i can’t eat    think    breathe    correct    for the record    my bones are also dust    heaped in your   old ash tray    waiting for the next    hard breeze    to blow

Crab Pot

I am floating in a tank, searching for proof I exist, submerged in a tank of water the color of dirty pillows, my claws taped shut, the others trying to box me out or rough me up without reason or explanation, all of us captive and confused, scratching at the glass because what else is there to do, because one by one we’re fished out with tongs until I’m the last one and through the murk I can see the outline of what looks like your face and your berry lipstick, kissing the glass instead of me, then pointing in my direction just before I’m airlifted out and buried where you always wanted me, in the ripe boil, in a cauldron of piping revenge.

Len Kuntz is a writer from Washington State and the author of four books, most recently the story collection, THIS IS WHY I NEED YOU, out now from Ravenna Press.  You can find more of his writing at

Woman wearing a crab on her head
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