George Franklin, Poetry

When Love Is Hard to Talk About

I made ceviche de pescado 
This weekend as a surprise for you,

Cutting corvina into cold, white
Slices, fish you could almost see through,

Marinated in lime and coarse salt,
In onions, cilantro, mangos too.

I boiled sweet potatoes, stir-fried the
Corn—you teased me because I had two

Servings, thought about more. I’m happy,
but also frightened when I’m with you,

Worried that I’ll screw it up somehow.
Before we met, I’d learned to make do,

Asked myself, “Why the hurry? It takes
Twenty years to fail at something new.”


Hiding

Under the bed is a good place. Outside
In the bushes, it’s too hot, and there’re bugs.

Behind the coat rack in the closet it’s
Cool and dark. The jackets smell of the dry

Cleaners. Often, the plastic covering
Is still on. You can sit on the floor and

Listen to the noise the walls make, the fan
On the air conditioner. But, the best 

Part about hiding is the voices you
Can barely hear, sometimes irritated,

Sometimes joking, sometimes you can’t tell which.
From under the door, a crack of light makes 

The plastic covers shiny. Children aren’t 
Supposed to pull them down over their heads, 

But they make your face weird in the mirror.
When do you think they’re going to find you?

Find George Franklin’s, Traveling for No Good Reason on Amazon

George Franklin - Traveling for no good reason

About the contributor

George Franklin is the author of two poetry collections: Traveling for No Good Reason (winner of the Sheila-Na-Gig Editions competition in 2018) and a bilingual collection, Among the Ruins / Entre las ruinas, translated by Ximena Gómez (Katakana Editores), as well as a recent broadside, "Shreveport," published by Broadsided Press. Individual publications include: Into the Void, The Threepenny Review, Salamander, B O D Y, Pedestal Magazine, The Wild Word, and Cagibi. He practices law in Miami and teaches poetry workshops in Florida prisons.

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