Cathexis Northwest Press
By: Joe Volpe
Suddenly your eyes sharpen,
forehead furrowed like folds of hills
carved by glacial waters. I’m reminded of
trivia nights back when we lived in Cambridge—
you with lips pursed, chewing caverns
into the inside of your cheek as I lorded
my horde of meaningless knowledge to impress you—
your eyes wandering throughout the crowd at our table,
my friends and their girlfriends who are now their wives.
I know it was years ago, but still I fear you felt it then,
that you did not belong with me but I belonged with you.
I sought to smother your doubt in the mysterious shadows
of young love, hide you in the valleys of passion and
isolate you from the rain and hear only the echoes
of what we’ve already said until you could no longer feel
yourself shouldering this burden, or the steady drip
of melting ice down your back.
Joe Volpe is a poet residing in the Greater Boston area of Massachusetts. He attended the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts where he studied English with a concentration in Creative Writing and Poetry. His work has been selected for publication in Meat for Tea: The Valley Review, The Finger, Gravitas, Lake Superior State University’s Border Crossing and Las Positas College’s Havik, among others. He is currently a middle school teacher in the Boston area.