Amber Rambharose, one of our 2014 Pushcart Prize nominees, runs Forthcoming Poets and is an Assistant Editor at YesYes Books. More of her work can be found in Volume 3, Issue 1 of burntdistrict.
THE FIRST TIME I KISSED HER
By Amber Rambharose
We were in the bathtub and it was just us
and the tub was empty and it was strange
to sit in an empty place – white as bone
and dry as bone and robbed of its purpose.
I didn’t want to do it. No, I did. I wanted to
peel back her cracked lips or peel back love –
the word, what it actually is underneath
the sound and what it does to the body.
I didn’t want to kiss her but I was born
to do it. I loved my little sister and our father,
watching over, smiling and the camera
lens, smiling and there was no water
in the bathtub so I knew it wasn’t bath time
and there was nothing else to do.