Lick Your Wounds by Kim Chinquee

Lick Your Wounds

I stare out the open window at the oak trees, hearing the echo of their branches in the breeze. On the chair, you snooze. I hear you, like a whistle, watch your belly rising and descending, one dog plopped on the sofa back, sprawled out like a rag doll. One tucks himself under the sofa, legs laid out before him. The other two dogs? Maybe on the bed in your room.

Earlier, after the sound of the doorbell, I imagined your ex-girlfriend, maybe asking for her things back. Knowing I was her once. All those years before.

Hi, I’d say. It’s good to see you.

Or, get the fuck away.

I was the one to introduce you two. She and I used to be friends, getting pedicures, zipping up one another’s costumes.

You answered the door. You said no one was there.

We’ve just gone out to the trails to run the dogs, up hills and around bends, tripping over stones and roots and branches.

I fell and I rose. I fell and I rose.


Lick Your Wounds


Kim Chinquee’s most recent collection is Shot Girls. Her sixth book is due out with Ravenna Press in 2019. She is a two-time Pushcart Prize winner, Senior Editor of New World Writing and Chief Editor of ELJ (Elm Leaves Journal). She lives with her boyfriend, their four dogs, and she co-directs the Writing Major at SUNY-Buffalo State.


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