Two seconds shy of
seven days,
clockwork heart capricious,
you haven’t spoken
since February or Ganymede.
Remember neverwhen?
Sol bursting
over Io,
you opened your lips
and breathed
would-be human memory
pearl bright
rolling past your tongue
oxygen the flavor of
Brunei,
Zambia,
Brazil.
Synapses kindle
and I watch.

Quiver.

Sever.

Now
Mundus Iovialis unwinds
behind your eyes.
A gasp.
1614
Simon Marius sputtering in the dark
between Forever Sleep
and trajectory,
between earth and Jupiter,
between your left eye
and the gears of your jaw.

Three kisses.
Four.
And still, you do not see me
hovering bone bright
beside you.

Originally published in Strange Horizons on June 6, 2016.
© 2016 by Lora Gray