Years: 1999, 2000, 2001
Sean Hill is the author of Blood Ties & Brown Liquor (UGA Press, 2008). His various fellowships and grants include fellowships from Cave Canem, The MacDowell Colony, and, most recently, a Stegner Fellowship from Stanford University. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Callaloo, Ploughshares, Tin House, and numerous other journals, and in several anthologies, including the forthcoming Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry. He currently lives in Bemidji, Minnesota. More information, as well as poems, can be found at his website: www.seanhillpoetry.com.
Postcard to My Third Crush Today
I’ve been on the move; the bottoms
of my shoes have rested on 48 states,
four Canadian Provinces, seven countries,
three continents and the crush is constant.
You look like someone’s daughter;
I find that so attractive. I once
thought this, but now it’s someone’s
mother or aunt more often than not
or cousin or uncle or brother or son
on occasion. The crush is everywhere
or maybe it’s me, my luck, like always
seeing the corner crooners by the storefront
of The Heart, loitering—singing for quarters
and grins. Most days I can count on the first
and second crush, and sometimes there’s a fifth
or sixth. They’re as likely not to notice me
as to smile in my eyes. Either way my heart
skips like those flat stones that kiss the skin
of the pond and fly off again before sinking.
Today it is you in that polka dot dress I need
to thank for getting me to three. The Heart’s
a big chain; there’s one everywhere you go,
and they rarely have those No Loitering signs.
You’re more likely to see No Solicitations.
I’ll leave this postcard here for you to find.