You Are a Flash in This Young Night by Jaime Brunton

You are in your best way, dressed and sweating after
a shower. The dew is settling on your good shoes. You
are a flash in this young night. You have a fresh cut
from shaving and are discreetly bandaged. You
are sixteen, on your way to meet a first love, yours
or someone else’s. You are on your way
to seeing in the dark, to briefly unlearning
the loneliness of the dark fields as seen from
the passenger side window of your friend’s car
because you are a flash in this young night. You
are the girl caught between the hot vinyl door
and another tepid body’s perfumed sweat
on the way home from a tired high school movie. And you
are the one who retreats back to the dark unnoticed
fields when this car catches up to the lovers,
two girls everyone recognizes, driving together down
the same dark road as this car, in which everyone
is a single sweating body trying to see into the dark
car ahead of you, guessing at what goes on there,
this car in which each body will go home alone, perfumed
sweat in all of their sheets and the new moon leaving all
dark, all imaginable, and you are a flash in this young night,
you, in your best way, fresh and cut.


Jaime Brunton’s poems appear or are forthcoming in specs, Denver Quarterly, Mid-American Review, The Cincinnati Review, DIAGRAM, Poet Lore, and elsewhere. Her chapbook, The Future Is a Faint Song, co-authored with Russell Evatt, won the 2012 Dream Horse Press Chapbook Competition, and will be published later this year. She has been a finalist for the Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press, the Omnidawn 1st/2nd Poetry Book Award, and the Four Way Books Levis and Intro Prizes. Brunton lives in Lincoln, NE with her wife and daughter.