8.02 / February 2013

Place Where Presence Was

At breakfast I can’t eat, so I draw
a topographical map of where

your body was. I look for relief
when you’re not here. Contour lines

down your side of the bed, then up
the refrigerator door, its elevation

suggesting your torso, and inside it
the eggs you’d break on yourself.
                Then the dip

in the couch where your body sat
drinking coffee. Dark concentrations

where lines bunch together. Dark
stains on the cushion, spilt thoughts.

Bret Shepard has lived in Barrow (AK), Los Angeles, and San Francisco. He is currently in the graduate program at the University of Nebraska, where he also teaches writing. Recent poems appear or are forthcoming in American Letters and Commentary, Copper Nickel, FIELD, Permafrost, Sink Review, Whiskey Island, and elsewhere.
8.02 / February 2013