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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

Filed under: Fuck Art, Let's Dance, Poetry

About the Author

Posted by

Jeremiah Walton is wary of bios, but there's the current sign they're flying: “Jeremiah Walton is founder of Nostrovia! Press & traveling bookstore Books & Shovels. They’ve featured at the NYC Poetry Festival, Oakland Beast Crawl, San Francisco Lit Crawl, Death Rattle, the Kansas City Poetry Throwdown, Cleveland’s Guide to Kulchur: Snoetry, among other lit fests, street corners, & living rooms across the country. They loath-themselves, & are struggling to find a healthy extension of the poem that incorporates publishing. Consistently confused, & trying to make space for compassion for the parts of myself I hate.” That feels like tattooing "love me" across my neck, but hopefully you get to know me thru my poems, not the accolades that are nothing more than memories to let go of.


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