Halfabecedarian Love Letter

by Ash Bowen

Allie, clutch me with your suitcase hand and tell me,
Bring the bazooka and your last swimming fish.
Chap my lips in a long, sweating kiss and
dare to dare me into your plans. Love’s intentions are best
explained by semaphore or rock-paper-scissors—
forget those boys at the bar and their meaningless kung fu kicks.
Get thee to a distillery. Follow my whiskey fingers
home where a barroom of bourbon-high-fives slap
in unison for you. Here’s what I’ll offer your mouth:
juniper berries I’ve smashed into gin, the plumpest
King’s Bay squid. Let’s drizzle ourselves inky
love letters and never mention the mess.

ASH BOWEN is the author of The Even Years of Marriage (winner, 2012 Orphic Book Prize, Dream Horse Press). Previous work appears in Best of the Net 2013, Best of the Net 2014, The Baltimore Review, Kenyon Review Online, New England Review, and elsewhere. The co-managing editor of Linebreak, he is also an assistant professor of English at Minot State University.