You told me to meet you here;
9:00 in December. Impenetrable sky.
I saw you shaking in the cold,
and we were only strangers then,
both atop a little hill that
I first thought a mountain.
I remember the jeering wind,
jacketless to keep it from you.
It wasn’t long before the fireflies,
and this was the best spot to watch,
you said. They would erupt,
like fog washing across the land,
they would spring with
little lights in their bellies,
tatters of the sun like warm
dust, like breathing steam.
Soon I turned my head to smile,
gave myself to you in ribbons,
but you couldn’t notice. Not then,
in that moment of light-eyed coma.
Know I wanted to kill them,
those insects, every single one.
I wanted to press their soft bodies
into death, pinch and pull the limbs,
blow them like dandelion seeds
straight into that gaping night.
When there were none left,
I wanted to sit with you again
atop the hill, root my hands
in the grass and dirt and yours,
forgetting about the neon stains
and graffitied fingertips.
Now that you’re gone,
I want you to know this:
It was never the heat, or the passion,
or your thousands of lights I desired--
only to feel your shiver, and my shiver,
and a whole infinity on either side.
Lachlan Chu is a Californian youth poet whose work has been recognized by the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the Bay Area Creative Foundation, KALW, and Narrative Magazine, among others. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Eunoia Review and Nightjar Magazine, among others. He serves as editor-in-chief for The Acedian Review.