Jay Young Gerard
and Lisa Nielsen

Jay Young Gerard

scenes from an italian restaurant
By Lisa Nielsen
Inspiration piece

you’ve grown smaller
from last I saw you,

he is larger than
your prize

that house you coveted
has bars

he takes up the space you once lived in

I engulf you in a jarring hug
your jutting bones bruising my flesh

i’m afraid to ask what sickness has taken all that weight
when you show us before pictures, “I was 155 pounds there”

You looked so healthy,
instead I say “you always looked good,”
as if that would encourage you to eat

i want to follow you to the bathroom
tell you you don’t have to do this,
you don’t have to go back to the table and sit
with him

his eyes, glazed, droopy, his words slurred, you’re his prize too
but the cost is not as high

i want to take your hand and feed you
i want to let you know it is not so lonely to be alone


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