after Ocean Vuong
I’m a buzz cut & braces, scarecrow-thin, ready for
my friend’s P90X video to show me a hunger
worth wearing. Shirts off, we drink protein—which is
a papier-mâché paste—& pump dumbbells to
get ripped in 90 days! In his close basement, we give
each other grief—no, like this—& perfect the
form, the rep, by shadowing the TV. His body
brushes mine after we try pushups. It’s not what
I was expecting—firm but I could fall into it,
like a mattress. Sorry, I say, & hope he knows
our chest bump means nothing. (It does.) He laughs about it
& dries off—rubs at his neck, back. In the mirror, we cannot
help but flex. & there, he hands me his towel—wet—to keep.
Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 22, Issue 1.
See all items about Kieron Walquist