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by Domenic Scopa


All was moving.
Teammates crowded Richie
who was fetal,
cradling his broken ankle.
The coaches huddled
with a first aid kit,
rummaging for gauze and tape.
Grass stained my soccer pants.
I had slide-tackled Richie.
My babysitter scolded me.


Inside my nightmares,
my babysitter’s in my childhood room.
He unclothes himself,
unconsciously graceful,
his naked body walking
window to window
drawing all the curtains,
so daylight will not wake us early.
He kills the lights.
I turn them back on
and hope he will not show me
how to move my tongue
the way that gets him off.


The soccer pants are still crumpled
in the closet’s corner
where the babysitter tossed them.
I was afraid of my closet
for years after he took me.
People ask me what happened to Richie.
I don’t know. I haven’t seen him
since I broke his ankle.

previously published in Fuck Art, Let’s Dance



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