Salt Packets

by Derek Thomas Dew

There was a time when I walked down the sidewalk
at night and warm gusts of air swept over me.
When they did, there was a silence, and I thought
I’d never hear anything ever again.

I thought I saw something
out of the corner of my eye
that maybe you had seen once,
even being plenty out of the way under the palm.

It could’ve been the motor
in your piece of earth, waking up the hum.
It’s just that you’re in on it. You’ve got all the eyes.
I often dreamed of a yawn heard from another room

that I took as belonging to a primal you:
The question from nowhere in milk’s fold
carrying my name across the floorboards
of a house we never lived in somewhere

in the back of my mind. Why is it that
you can just see the blows coming.
You can picture the words as they’re said,
and I can only say what I have burned

before a place dries out,
and the final hand comes to the knot
in the center of your back.


Derek Thomas Dew’s work appeared in the anthologies Dead and Undead Poems (Everyman Press, 2014), in Heavenly Bodies (Beautiful Dragons Press), My Dear Watson: The Very Elements of Poetry (Beautiful Dragons Press), and in journals such as The Curator. He recently completed a new manuscript of poetry entitled Maple’s Labor. He lives in Brookings, Oregon.

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