6.02 / February 2011

I am

drinking my black coffee in the living room
when I hear the car door slam and through the white wall I
can see you. your hat suddenly transformed into a battleaxe
chopping vigorously at the air
in that faintly erotic manner
that you cultivate
as though you were the bastard child
of paul bunyon and oscar wilde
it is at that very moment that I realize:
I am not watching you through a wall (impossible)
I am watching myself through a wall
and somehow—I know not how—I have escaped me
I have wandered into the street and waved shamelessly
at the coffee girl you once accused
me of flirting with
because I ordered a latte
and told her it was perfect
though you and I both knew
that I was lying through the foam
because I drink my coffee
strong. black. bitter.
enjoy the tug of unrestrained acid
snapping at my throat
just like your teeth
once did
and whether this is a love poem from you to me
or a love poem from me to you
or just the saddest song that never
once played
on the radio
at all
I’m not. sure
but there—

(you have me)

Joseph A. W. Quintela marshals words unto the battlefield with little regard for their souls. That is a lie. In fact, he cries each time a word is felled. In solitude. Where the tears cannot be mistaken for a waterfall. Beautiful. Innocent. He raises letters and tells them that a story is a lie that is necessary for their existence. He raises punctuation marks and tells them they are letters. When they all grow up to be morticians and serial killers he feigns surprise, draws a knife across his supper and says, Nothing can be told without death. You can find him online at http://www.josephquintela.com/in-writing.
6.02 / February 2011