Nick Soluri



i am the matador holding that red blanket

your mother made for us, & you are the

bull coming at me with eyes glowing blue

& horns, throwing me into the dusty ground


i am still there, like water in socks,

when you tell me to leave this room

forever so you can be alone,

& i know what it means when you say that


i am the cigarette butts in my ashtray

smoked down to the filter, & the filter

chewed and gnawed on to suck out 

the last bits of tobacco juice,

& you calling me a crackhead for

smoking like that & not like you,

with your classy parliaments smoked halfway,

which i call wasteful


i am the eggs we fried together with beer

instead of oil or butter, to get a little

buzz going before we’d begin our work,

maybe like alcoholics, but who isn’t an alcoholic

at some point in their life, & i’m glad i could

be one with you


i see you there at the foot of the bed

dripping in sweat afterwards,

& i see you so beautifully while 

you frowned at how unsatisfactory it was,

for one of us at least, though i can’t be sure


i am with you when we took those tabs

& you kept pressing your face against the floor

we laid on, & how i kept talking about how

everything was breathing, no, vibrating,

& how you said, “these fucking floors though, check these out,”

& i did, and they really were fantastic


i am with you in the little closets for shoes

& small coats we squeezed into, too

embarrassed to goodwill them since

we’d bought them from goodwill on

one of those first dates, & now

we’ve grown out of them,

though, those closets were dark enough

for us to be together when we couldn’t


and i see you there holding those flowers

i’d picked out, and how still you were,

like a not-even-being being, and 

i fixed your dress a little,

an excuse to feel you again,

and how your mother saw me cry,

and how i wasn’t embarrassed to do so



Nick Soluri is an undergraduate student at Union College in New York. He’s been previously published in OcculumThe Slag ReviewAlbany Poets, and others. He wants to thank those at the New York State Summer Writers Institute who helped workshop his poetry, and hopes that they too will find homes for their beautiful pieces. He lives in North Carolina, and is trying to get out of there. It’s too hot.