Considered to Have Magic Power

It was hostility that attracted
My buoyancy and lust, a heart
Stuck in a forever place that would
Not quit, not for courage
Or for squandering.

He was a speedy bite of grief,
Awash in a long shore of lies
And hopeless fears that could
Not be held close. It was as if
He never felt fragile or awash

In the possibility that someone
Could bring hope to him,
Like a dumbwaiter stuck
Between floors, an antiquated
Relic of loss, a sigil, and sure,
Aromatic, like a potion stored
under the pillow.

A weird romantic testimony
To luck and need. Yes.
My endless loop of need
Tossed and rolled about
With the belief of things really
Really working out some way.

Even amid the grand disturbance
Of him, and as he was, but an
After-thought, a heart line to
Be distilled and thought through
Like a phrase you forgot, as if days
Themselves rolled by, past and far
Away. The luck of him, and him alone.


In Salty Humidity

We pedaled with the brisk
Talk of adolescence, feet
Dragging on the road when
We were too fast for our own
Good. We were a couple
A family of sorts, backward
And full of basketball and cold
Pancakes, saving ourselves
For summer all semester long
Not stopping at crosswalks
Or lights we talked and pedaled
To an undetermined destination
Where our amazement grew
With each awful breath
We took inspiring and inhaling
Against the salty air, depth
Caught and lost in our own allure
And a promise of unity amid
The dexterity of our climbing
Skills as each new lesson
Loomed closer as the humble days
Tore into our psyche like
A knife cutting open a crisp
Granny Smith. We were obnoxious
With a flawed sense of bewilderment
And prosperity, awash with
Paper bags and ratty footballs. We chewed
Juicy Fruit and popped it like firecrackers
Exploding into our conversations
as we screamed back
At each other about the tunnel
And the sandy wash ahead,
Alive with fresh ideas and riches
Only we could dare speculate about.

MILLICENT BORGES ACCARDI is the author of three books, most recently, Only More So (Salmon). She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, Fulbright, CantoMundo, California Arts Council, Barbara Deming, Fundação Luso-Americana (FLAD), and SOPAS, Special Congressional Recognition from the Portuguese community. Her work also appears in The Journal, Quiddity, and The Laurel Review.