Love and the Bodega by Oliver Bendorf

Love went to the bodega and said, look,
Both of us are products of the cold night air.
We could get together at dew point. I’ll call you
Any funny thing. The bodega said, love,
I am in contact with a freezing surface.
A freezing cold surface is in touch with me.
Love scattered the bodega’s molecules
Thoroughly. In the street, pieces of bodega
Strewn quite randomly. Some pieces ended up
In the lapidary looking like stones. Some pieces
Blew through the wall of the old dog kennel.
And everyone who worked at the record store
Was pissed because who wants, at minimum wage,
To have to pick bodega chunks out of the bluegrass
Bin? Love does, that’s who. The bodega took it easy
In pieces in the blue jean pocket of love. In a chorus
Of whispers, the bodega said, love, I’m going to send you
In a straight line to the sky. I’m going to reach you from all
Parts of it.


Oliver Bendorf is the author of The Spectral Wilderness, selected by Mark Doty for the 2013 Wick Poetry Prize and forthcoming from Kent State University Press. Other poems of his are forthcoming in Barn Owl Review, Blackbird, and jubilat. He lives in Madison, Wisconsin.