Holt Street

I wound a broken guitar string around
my left thumb and index finger until
I could no longer feel either of them
because I was high and I liked the shades
of red and white that pulsed
down my hand until he unwound the string
and placed my palm in his own,
and then I just liked the warmth of him.
I liked those moments when he walked me home
and I flashed upturned eyes on downturned bikes,
kickstands upended and left broken and looking
as vulnerable as we did, perched
against the fence, eyeing the back
gate that opened to the neighbours yard.
We had been sneaking out of open windows
and broken homes every weekend that winter,
and sneaking inside the empty ones filled
with a lack of adult supervision
and cartons of American cigarettes.
We read funny notes left in unlocked liquor
cabinets by negligent parents who just wanted
to winter somewhere in peace.
A few of us even found our shadows there,
hiding between the sticky pages of dirty
magazines left in the guest bathroom,
shoved behind the toilet and brimming
with shit we had no business seeing.
We crawled into bed that winter,
with bad choices and badder boys,
and no clue how to please either
because we were nothing but broken,
silly teenaged girls and by the time we realized
we were hungry, it was two hours till sunrise
and LSD never really wanted us to eat anyway.

© Nicole Lyons 2019

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