Oranges for Breakfast

This year craves solace more
than language. Tongue and
mouth sit in separate
pink fields. Yes I can say

look, dew froze over.
Eucalyptus lay cut and exhaling.
But that doesn’t turn the earth
greener or less fearful.

Hours ago, old night brought
its tokens to usher us on
yet you stood it down
and lit the windows

like there’s a word for that —
your body hinging open to mine
and, despite the work of rind,
morning arrives sticky as citrus.

AMANDA HARTZELL’s chapbook, The Heart Never Pretends to Be a Beautiful Muscle, is forthcoming by Finishing Line Press. Her work was nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net and appears in Breakwater Review, Carve Magazine, and New Letters, among others. She holds an MFA from Emerson College in Boston. Originally from eastern PA, she now lives and writes in Seattle with her husband, two children, and their dog.