The Traveller

WRITTEN BY YEJIN SUH

What is the opposite of decapitation?
A truck head turning into an intersection,

bodyless. My father told me, smokers
are the worst types of addicts. They drain and suck

until their bone-dry lips shrivel to nothing,
shrivel to certain pieces, star bits and acrid crumbles.

Behind my eyelids unfurl white vapor
escaping his lips in morsels of soft smoke conjunction.

I watched him through the Belt of Venus
between my shutter blinds, half-way closed,

slicing in alternating shades of white. I couldn’t
see his face. I remember learning grief in five stages,

which stumps me since people have died
for grief, fought brothers and sisters,

tore raw screams for it, spiraled long novels
in search of it, made love, tasted metallic

against their teeth, cut hair, whored themselves out,
meditated, dipped in cold wonderlands.

If in five stages I remain at the inception
of the first. To blink enough times

is to pay homage to a fleeting world.

Yejin Suh is a Korean-American student in New Jersey. She has been recognized by the Scholastic Awards. Her work appears in Crashtest Magazine, The Eunoia Review, and Just Poetry.

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