Gabbi Tolentino



I Still Dream of You

Your head on my hip,
with Dutch kisses in the oven.
You start swimming through the branches
of a bare beech tree
ask me to follow
but don’t offer your hand
and we glide through the air
smelling metal and grass.
Then we ride on shopping carts at Vons
and buy all the grapes
zooming down the ice cream aisle—
your big teeth
your laugh
a million times over in the reflection of the refrigerator doors
like a glossy video on loop.
Then we’re sitting on the bed while the radio fuzzes on
and you’re eating all the apples, the fresh juice sticking to our hands
and you jump up and ask me why we haven’t gone to Paris yet I cry and watch the static on the TV fuzz in and out
I confess that I’m scared, so I start to shiver
and you ask why
and I squeak out something disgraceful like
“I can’t afford to lose my pens,”
and you understand and the knot in my stomach is gone
with the wave of your smile.
And then we’re driving.
And the car won’t stop.
I cry some more because when we press the brake it doesn’t work
and every time we hit a car it vanishes into the next
and we’re going so fast that I don’t want to crash
and you say “Hold the grapes!”
I’m sorry but I can’t
and they smash in my arms and stain my shirt berry red
You won’t stop the car, you can’t
till I see your foot on the gas and I yell at you
and all you say is “I’m sorry” as we come careening towards a tunnel
and I can’t see into it so I scream and you scream back