He gave me a drink. He gave me a ring
and a cigarette, and I gave it back.
I wanted his hands. He gave me
a clock. I wanted skin.
He gave me paper tickets, paper cards.
He gave me a cotton dress, soap
shaped like rocks, rocks shaped like soap,
a little tray to set them on.
He gave me a belt, and I gave it back.
I wanted flesh. He gave me a peach.
I wanted a door. He gave me a door.
By then, I wanted blood.
He gave me licorice. He gave me a drink.
I wanted his hand on my throat.
He gave me copper windchimes,
blithely tinkling in the hurricane.
Juliana Gray is the author of Roleplay, which won the Dream Horse Press 2010 Orphic Prize, and the forthcoming chapbook Anne Boleyn’s Sleeve. Recent poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from PMS: poemmemoirstory, Measure, 32 Poems, River Styx. An Alabama native, she teaches at Alfred University in western New York.