August Afternoon

Katrina Kaye

We dance in
the heat of the kitchen.

Van Morrison plays lazily
from the living room,

me,

paper thin sun dress,
void of the undergarments
that would only cause
lines of sweat in already
wrinkled skin,

catching the breeze between
bare legs;

you,

with the grease still in
the creases of your hands,

holy jeans hanging low
on bare waist,

crooked smile plays
on parted lips;

we dance.

You would not take
no for an answer,

would not acknowledge
my casual stumble
over your bare feet,

toes somehow chilled
despite the summer heat.

We sway across kitchen
counters singing along
to every word,

hair sticking to temples,
mouth dry save for
the song on tongue.

You tell me I am
beautiful and, in that
rare delusion of August,

I believe you.

“August Afternoon” is previously published in Wingless Dreamer (2021).

A Warning

Katrina Kaye

when you get older,

the words go.

they slip,

scatter,

strip from pen and page

stick in mouth,

in throat,

in mind.

they float,

flimsy as silk ribbons,

and frustrate the mind.

when you get older,

much rots.

the knees

crackle and pop,

the back

sways and scoops,

wrists stiffen.

callous thickens,

heels crack

in the cold.

if there

is not a pen

for your arthritic

hands to curl around,

you may never

hold one again.

if you don’t repeat

the words,

you forget how to

pronounce them.

forget what they mean.

cling to the words,

before they slip,

like silk ribbons,

from your grasp.

“A Warning” is previously published in They Don’t Make Memories like That Anymore …(2011).

Tiny Tragedy

Katrina Kaye

the house wakes

an old man

with tired bones

clicking into place

an echo with
no consequence

I am losing my words

I know it now
a piece or two

gone

every morning

a memory that does
not wake with my body

tiny tragedy

tiny loss

a step at a time
a moment too long
and suddenly
it adds up

and

too fast

it ends

“Tiny Tragedy” is previously published in Madness Muse Press (2020).