Lauren Hilger & Dionissios Kollias
In a Tin Box
After a round of rummy,
my name, aloud in your sleep
I tried to get in. Jumped over the dog for what was
left, a postcard on the refrigerator,
a handful of cherries,
gas money for a trip to Kingston.
Engraved in silver
“now’s the time.” That
island bus, bathing trunks
thrown into the water. Tumbled on low.
Mind on the ensellure.
It was your fear not mine
when you touched me. We shared a bed with it.
Wrapped it around our necks,
a promenade to Plato, smooth
They have a plane to catch tomorrow, move this story along.
We made everything up to be this way—
the rolled sleeves, the right fit
—we put these things on,
dressed ourselves up to complement
the lantern lights
reflected on wooden siding,
a calculated perversion.
You don’t know what you look like
I was cold with a braid thick as a vine,
spilled iced tea in the swimming pool,
spilled on a book you had lent me,
old as anything,
spilled on wild sage
in my mint dot bikini,
tried to find one thing to make me laugh.
George Washington sat here
by leather books and
portraits of fat forefathers, their thin faced wives,
paintings in pride of place.
What are you going to find?
The man tastes the perfume I just sprayed.
He’ll tell you trumpet players don’t dance.
Let me tell you,
I turn into a folding fan.
Can open a door
with a mug of black coffee to the brim,
good at something.
Everyone was a dressed adult.
Married, spread like butter.
Lauren Hilger is the author of Lady Be Good (CCM, 2016.) Named a Nadya Aisenberg Fellow in poetry from the MacDowell Colony, her work has appeared in BOMB, Harvard Review online, Kenyon Review online, Massachusetts Review, and elsewhere. She serves as a poetry editor for No Tokens.
Dionissios Kollias was born in Greece and received his Bachelor of Arts in History Education from the University of Illinois-Chicago. He currently lives and writes in Brooklyn, New York.