Gina Keicher

Not Your Radio

Water like snow or sea. For years. A face. Water in the sink with the clogged drain. Memory, too, cools to room temperature.

Bedrooms all across town. Radios switched on over the area. Who knows how many were tuned inexactly. The jukebox hungry for money. Radio waves glimmered back.

At the shows my friends and I wore our hair black. Eyelids shadowed peacock blue. In the worst season I wore hallways on my face.

A compact pressed between fingers and palm. The sponge flattened by machine. And then, usage. The kind that takes months. Takes a mouth to feel a toothache. Takes a mouth to be brave.

To get anyplace. It takes a skilled driver to do that. A bag full of firecrackers, pressed against my cheek to get home in the dark.

Gina Keicher earned her BA and MFA from Syracuse University. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in Dark Sky, DIAGRAM, Foothill, Harpur Palate, H_NGM_N, ILK, Nano Fiction, Ninth Letter, Paper Darts, and Stone Canoe. She lives in Ithaca, New York with her husband.