by Zachary Caballero

No one is awake
except the orchestral
male crickets, flexing
their wings, sound springing,
surrounding me, my mother’s home,
and for all I know,
the earth.
Over, and over,
a learned clockwork
of wings lingering
under the pinched-purple
suburban sky
where I too used to linger,
in the earliest days of
my heartbreak, before
I became used to it,
where I would walk, and walk, and walk,
the empty spaces inside me then
would consume whatever
I put inside, and now,
again, the empty spaces
inside me are still
filling up with song,
the cup of my heart
spilling over, all my wrongs,

working to be held,

with such precision,
it must be a performance
of some sort,
a love song in
the pre-dawn
a creature of both dawn
Am I any different?
A cricket’s temptation is a man’s determination.
But oh, how I wish I could stop listening to
the music I have pretended to
make when I thought a woman
was listening,
when I thought
rubbing my hands
against each other,
would teach me the words
of songs I never wanted to sing.