From “Healing: An Index”

by Emma Rose Yahr

INADEQUATE: Mrs. Catrano’s sixth grade math class; the subject line
              “I’m Not Your Robot” sent from user Cloudlily45; personas know-it-all;
              nerdy; academic (see also: OVERCOMPENSATING); labeled bossy; bitchy; bitch;
              (adjective): lacking the quality or quantity required; insufficient for any
              and all purposes including (but not limited to) solving quadratics and

              I didn’t have my first kiss until I was 19.
              I haven’t been kissed since.

              emotionally and logically my brain didn’t have time to
              switch tracks; fucking unfinished; I don’t like that I’m still writing
              about you; you and that empty sidewalk; an alternate universe in which you are not
              a drowning boy; impermanent and hard to distinguish
              “don’t let someone take up emotional real estate if they aren’t paying rent”
              Sarah Kay.

JULY: the second month of summer; or the first summer I felt loneliness
              like chapped lips; I was on Drummond Island with no cell service; you
              were at O’Hare, unsure if you should text me; you didn’t;
              and my lip broke open; a blood red sunset; but I did not cry.

JUNE: the first month of summer; or Great Grandpa’s memorial service
              four months late; the stone walls of the mausoleum making everything else
              seem so small: that night at the radio station, the green floral couch;
              we ate tilapia at the reception and I did not turn it into a metaphor.

KALEIDESCOPE: a tube containing mirrors and colored glass;
              a shifting perspective; a changing pattern; I’ve stopped checking
              your social media like clockwork; like the spinning tiles in this child’s toy;
              baby steps.

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