Brouckaert

Will You Still Love Me Once the Moonwalk Stops?

Justin Brouckaert

The cicadas outside my window dare me to define the terms of this relationship. Bravado like that will get a guy salty, but of course I have to try. I tell them this: that all my sexual fantasies are of the two of us fully clothed, flipping through pictures of ourselves naked & saying Gotdamn we used to tear that shit up. I tell them these days I keep my hands on things like never before. I slip out of my skin midstride, leaving rubbery pods in streets & sidewalks. People call me out on it. They hold me up to my face & ask me if I realize what I’ve done. I say, Hello, have you met my other demons? There are these cicadas. There is this hide I thought I swallowed, my heart & groin cinched with wire. There is this husk you left at the foot of my bed that is beginning to seem indecent. I sit in the corner booth at family restaurants licking napkins into pulp, shaping a something to fill the hollow you carved with your chin between my shoulders. It is only a hollow, I say to the husk. I am drunk. I have been drunk for a long time now. I rub grooves into my sides until the friction makes a song.

JUSTIN BROUCKAERT’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Rumpus, Passages North and Gigantic Sequins, among other publications. He is a James Dickey Fellow at the University of South Carolina, where he serves as fiction editor of Yemassee. Find him online at jjbrouckaert.tumblr.com or on Twitter @JJBrouckaert.

 

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