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reverberations that come after dark

by Zane Frederick

reverberations that come after dark

my stomach is an empty cave, with echoes of

past loves that don’t sleep there anymore,

there’s usually footsteps on the floor above,

perfectly timed heartbeats but i have not

heard him make noise in some time,

caterpillars lined up inside my stomach

still growing, still learning how to live in old skin,

unknown of the next reckless to come and break

them all free, force them to fly even if they don’t want to,

afraid to move around in the dark, or not know where

they will end up once it’s over,

they have died too many times

to claim rebirth a celebration,

i bet they miss the safety of their carcass,

i bet they miss the quiet

vans taught me how to run

by Zane Frederick

vans taught me how to run

to stay doesn’t have to sound as suffocating as it does,

you are allowed to leave if the party is too much, if the

police have yet to arrive but your throat is still closing in,

you can leave if the love is not worth coming back for,

worn out floors from sharp knees that begged you to stay don’t have to

be enough pardon to set up the dinner table again, or hang your dress shirts

back up and fold all your blankets and ambitions to go past city limits

and you don’t have to wait for distance and timing to give you

a proper excuse to look like the nice guy,

the nice guy is allowed to leave too,

you are allowed to flee when you see the clouds roll in,

when you smell the smoke and the wind picks up,

when the flood comes and forgives your feet,

take your sweater back and make sure you never

leave a piece of yourself for someone again,

tie your shoes, tight, double knot and run

as fast as you can


Zane Frederick

Zane Frederick is a city born Gemini, raised in the hell and heart of Phoenix, Arizona. His work has been published in Little Rose Magazine, Dodging The Rain, Milk + Beans and The Tunnels. He currently attends Northern Arizona University and when not writing, he plays guitar, piano, and delves into art history books. Zane published his debut poetry book, (he)art., in 2018.

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