by Zachary Caballero

Busy missing you — I have not tasted spring.”
-Emily Dickinson, from a letter to Susan Gilbert, April 1868.

Oak trees cloak the afternoon 
Like spring’s longest shadow.
With nowhere to go, each color
Grows larger in my head.
I save enough room to bloom,
for my coffee, for my mistakes.
I feel powerful in my perception,
picking apart the atoms of my affection,
fixated on the future
of my joy like a laid-off prophet.
The breeze flows without interruption
and I join the congregation of naked leaves—
both our bodies sway together
in the open bed of the afternoon.
How much further must I cave
before I say your name?
I’m in my chair
but I feel like groundwater.