by Becca Rosenthal

it's easy to let your guard down when your shirt's already up over your head.

running waterwards with
skin the most obvious secret we share. here are my wrists.

no one needs another naked city no one wants another of those new york poems, you know,

but for the river oh relieving—

it's a dirty tide or something like it,
the river remembers july, a familiar pollution.

the dull stolen weight of the sun sinking let it
ferry us down there, not stones in our pockets but
our shoes on the shore. a last a loved along the hudson,
run. run.

the river, tide & time is a river so death by water etc,
a hook is easy as the sick beauty of the mushroom cloud.

the nameless spills that submerging surrounding,
our names drown & the water returns a wave of nausea.
or maybe nostalgia unstitched in this heat—

yes july sing of summer & this water stinks of it, of
unholy baptisms. here are my hips.

Becca Rosenthal was born & raised in Boston. She studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and earned her B.A. in Cinema Studies from Smith College. She is still trying to figure out what to do with it.