That Were It, Or

by Marielle Prince

the air. We need to clear the table.

your breath. You hold the table.

your cheek. I slap the table to make a point.

the music. Neighbors hear the table through the wall.

a mark. I leave the table.

your voice. You raise the table, drop it roughly.

I beg. Forgive me the table.

knocking. Neighbors, the table.

away. We pretend to be the table.

in bed. We lie the table apart.

sex. Why do we even have the table?

sleep. The table is resetting.

MARIELLE PRINCE is a poet and editor in Charlottesville, Virginia. She spent several years as managing editor of Bull City Press (Durham, NC) and has also worked as poetry editor for Meridian and Count Intern for VIDA. She received her MFA from the University of Virginia, and her poems have appeared in journals such as 32 PoemsThe CollagistThe Greensboro ReviewLuminaShenandoahTupelo Quarterly and Waccamaw.