Lake House

Melissa Watt
Melissa Watt
holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College. Her work is featured or forthcoming in Breakwater Review, Ohio Edit, Lunch Ticket, Cheap Pop, Poetry Quarterly and Black Heart Magazine.



Lake House

When I get home, I break a mirror,
twisting to see the back of my reflection.
This sudden neon sense of loss
has replaced elation and here I am:

straightening my hair instead of tracing
your life line. But weren’t we just lost
in Miami, when I thought you’d be mad,
and you raised me up to kiss me?

That night you plunged your hand
in a fountain to fish out a Euro,
and when I said it was bad luck,
you gave it up. But we went on.

Took a trip to the lake house where you
picked me a gardenia and I followed,
barefoot down the moonlit dock.
In the chorus of tree frogs I thought

I could love you. Sometimes I hear myself
laughing the night, held in turquoise
water, cold. Your sister’s dog
killed a mole and I should have known.

When all I saw on that last long drive
was a turkey vulture, I should have
gone home. Instead I arrived at your door
a fully formed human heart. You had already

closed up. We ate dinner in silence,
had distant sex—you looked in my eyes
plainly, then slept. I wondered,
who had I been, waiting for you?

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