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i do ballet (and boys) This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

the internet says the etymology of embla
is uncertain, and maybe what he’s doing
is trying to press his fingertips into the clay
of your name and make meaning, darling

i don’t know

it’s a nasty thing to love someone who only loves your body
i know this inside out; he knows you outside in.

your body is so beautiful that maybe you can forgive him
for running his fingers over your collarbones, your brittle
little ribs and not cracking them open

he doesn’t want a graveyard, maybe
he doesn’t want an excavation.
your body is the green hill before humans
litter the ground with dead dreams

some of us have butter fingers: he might be scared
to drop and bruise you, ballerina, the leading man
holding a swan in the air that turns to tulle and silk
and flutters her heartbeat out between his calloused hands.



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