This Is What Happened

Ernesto Trejo

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This is what happened:
She refused to lean on my shoulder
and it hurt. The sky
was empty and the radio said good night.
The mountains around us were teasing:
At times I thought we had been
devoured. At times it seemed
they had vanished.
I fondled the rabbit's foot
on the keychain and felt it tick.
Ahead I saw a tumbleweed
with a thousand tiny eyes.
I saw a porcupine or a possum leap
from behind the wild eyes.
I swerved the car and lost control
of the situation.


This is what happened:
You never lost control. We hit
a wild pig before sundown and you said
it was unfortunate and mused on probability.
We stopped.
The sun was sinking behind,
and darkness was moving on us, kicking
tumbleweeds, blowing sand.
We held hands and drove
into the darkness. The radio said good night
and I leaned on your shoulder.
I always lean on your shoulder.
You hummed an old song and I fell asleep.
You kept humming so you wouldn't.
You forgot the words and made some up. You
were confident. You knew
I would die that night, yet you were confident.
You opened my door and swerved the car
at the curve. There were no animals.
There was only me on the shoulder of the road.
My body a still river, my head on a lagoon.
You thought you saw a swallow,
a black swallow, and still you didn't lose control.
The mountain to your left collapsed
and I leaped on you, where I have been
ever since, lodged somewhere,
between your neck and your shoulder.

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