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The Last Thing I Loved Alternate Histories Dear Sparky On This Day Indie Book Radar

6.13.2016


Johnsonia
COURTNEY GUSTAFSON


Two days before the fire
we dreamed of everything
burning down. After all

the dust, we have ended
up across borders. We
have always come to ends.

Personal, you said. In the
blown-out glass three countries
over, I was thinking

about you in the dark
watching your violins
burn.




In the aerial photos you
are a pile of rubble and
brick. The first time

I saw your hallways they
were already in pieces
underground. I wanted

to ask why you took
so many pictures of the
window frames: black

holes with nothing
but smoke and dust behind
them.




In all my dreams since
the fire your walls are
made of glass. We all

know why you left. We
all say: personal. But
I have stood outside

that crime-scene sidewalk
staring up at your burnt black
building for three years

now. To say: I have loved
you better. I have loved you
better.



COURTNEY GUSTAFSON is a poet and writer living in Tucson, Arizona. Her work has appeared in or is forthcoming in Word Riot, Synaesthesia Magazine, Rust + Moth, and elsewhere. Her first chapbook, Unapology, was the winner of Dirty Chai’s Dirty Chaps Chapbook Competition and is forthcoming in fall 2016.

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