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Coney Island

I give to red-topped toy machine back a decal as I want
something else, better, what you have: rubber replica
of reptile, shock-purple and sinister. The small business

of setting out to do a day that started evening last
with soup and summer boredom ended up here, asleep
once more, clutch of fear in the sand. Concession calls

to wake us and we are two among the hunched, invisible
to the well oiled grotesque. Four-ticket ride for retribution,
eyes spun from upside-down, from bite and cannot scream.

Next whiskey has at a boardwalk bar, a watered down
one of my own. I could now dance like this strange pair
by the jukebox: resolved, fat and furrowed. But I am not

ugly yet or cheered. I want a room to keep a home.
I want a bed. (Lemonade. Sand again. Subway.)
Let me sleep on your lap. No tracks to cross bridges;

we are going underwater. Whatever we have done,
intending, had sun-marked a line flat to my flash. It hurts
like want hurts: that sweet. The rare side of no.


Lynn Melnick

LYNN MELNICK'S poems have appeared recently in the Boston Review. She lives in Manhattan.


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