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Spadina Literary Review  —  edition 5 page 15

verse

Dust and Plastic

by Nicole Casey

Painted toes on the end of feet lit by moonlight
draw circles on the surface of inky water,
dip and disappear,
dip and disappear.
A caramel wind, cooing
caresses earlobes
draws a listless head upright.
Inhale, recall.

You stood across lanes of traffic, hands stuffed in pockets
fired a smile that doused me in gasoline
mindlessly
I leapt and twirled like a little girl in front of you,
laughed like a hyena, revealed myself.
Like dust and plastic bags swept up by the wind
on a concrete corner,
a heart spun up and out of order
(They tend to do when they’re set on something new.)

Painted toes, spinning circles on the surface,
keep dipping and disappearing.
A still liquid below beckons
the linger of an opiate stare at ankles
now stumped by the creamy cool.

What a frightful place to be.
Not there, spilling out
but here,
small and withdrawn under a slice of the moon,
its glow shattering into fragments as it lights up

my lingering limbs
and my fixation
in such a familiar fashion.

Blades, rustling by the thousands,
coax a shut-eyed exhale from within —
My lips remember their softness; my shoulders settle.
And I get up, of course. I know too much.

Submerged limbs are pigeon-hearted attempts
to protect the Dancer
a Warrior
the inexhaustible and formless Lover.