Amorak Huey: After Having Sex
Taylor Leopold

Taylor Leopold

WHEN A POET WRITES AFTERWARD YOU KNOW IT MEANS

 

after having sex;

or, after someone has died.

Before such a thing, or during,

who has time for poetry?

It’s April in Michigan, which means

we have plenty of time

and this poem isn’t

coming after anything

except more stupid snow. It must

have been a day like this one

when my parents decided

to leave this state, move south,

start over: what hunger

carried them along that highway.

How young they must have felt,

or how old, how purposeful.

They are both still alive,

still in the South, but divorced

and I have nothing meaningful

to say about any of that,

for now. Somehow here I

am, back in this state

as if by accident, twice the age they were,

thinking about you, thinking about

desire, thinking about the tricks

a tongue plays with words,

with weather, with another tongue:

such roads we travel

in each other’s mouths.


Amorak Huey, a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in poetry, is author of the poetry collection Ha Ha Ha Thump (Sundress, 2015) and the chapbooks The Insomniac Circus (Hyacinth Girl, 2014) and A Map of the Farm Three Miles from the End of Happy Hollow Road (Porkbelly, 2016). He teaches writing at Grand Valley State University in Michigan.