If I Leave You with Moonlight, by Felicia Martínez

Even now I see the gifts of patient windows keeping watch
as the road grows damp and the ravens gather razor beaks
under iridescent wings. Our porch light flickers once
twice and the sidewalk’s sharpened shadows
fold up like paper stars. And still
I linger. I feel

the ache of me
of Death who is the space
between my footsteps
moving as I move

like a hand
with foggy fingers
wafting hollow
slips of time
they weave a swelling rib cage
from the moonlight for my heart. Though that belongs

to you.
You who wander room to room.

Gather the dishes. Turn out the lights. Settle our cat in your sheltering arms
and when you hear me call, place your hand against my memory. I am only
longing and starlit bones

but if I walk away, will you weep alone?
And if I stay

our doorstep no longer recognizes me.
I cast this throbbing shape against an old tree stump
until my rib cage shatters the air
like rain. The moonlight

my love
it embraces our home
it glitters this road

Felicia Martínez is a writer and educator born and raised in eastern New Mexico. Her deep love of experimental story structures and points of view in poetry and fiction have inspired her work found in The Acentos Review, The Deadlands, Star*Line, Space and Time Magazine, and others. She holds both an M.A. and Ph.D in English from Stanford University and presently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Return to Issue #27 | Support The Deadlands

Scroll to Top
Scroll to Top