English #frapalymo: Missed in Season

While I await your return,
I crush ripe strawberries
against my face. Red
sweet purée of seeds, nectar
glides down my flushed cheeks,

cools me now that the ice is
melted, air conditioning
unit rattles. At
night, I toss in bed, kick back
thin sheets, fan myself

with open fingers. The heat
makes me tired. Sleep evades
when you’re not here. Come
push my idle heart from my
chest, pound it to life with your
frozen knuckles. I

hear the woodpecker knocking
on brick walls, dash for the door
to greet you, and my
ankles break underneath me—
The sun burns my skin.

© 2016 Nortina Simmons


Written for Frau Paulchen’s Lyrik Monat, which translates from German to Mrs. Paulchen’s Poetry Month. Today’s prompt is a tweet from @einsilbig“so much tiredness made my face move inside”

This poem is also in response to Amina’s tanka, with a little artistic leeway. It’s more of an inverted tanka, as the syllable count is 7-7-5-7-5.

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