A woman in a white dress comes to you,
lays the cool fish of her hand on the hot
stretch of your forehead. You cry water.
Water has run away. She is so beautiful
you want to keep this fever, the murmur
of quilts, her blonde braid, her blonde
brow pinched. Soon you will have to
go alone in the cracked air with a pail
frosted over to find the well on the hill.
You will whoop with cough. And the water,
the water you haul up with the long braid
of rope, will be cold, taste of Narcissus,
her perfume. It will splatter the white
dress you wear, the one you refused
to let them bury her in. She was naked,
pale as forgiveness in the quilted satin.

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—Kamal E. Kimball is a poet living and breathing in the Ohio River Valley. She holds a BS from Ohio State University with a minor in English. She works as a grant writer and journalist, and spends free time assembling poems out of fallen table scraps.

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