First Kiss

The Duck Pond owns it.
It wasn’t born
tangled in the rhododendron.
It just emerged that way.

I was twelve or nine or leaving town.

Winter prodded
my shoulders as we waited
for a warm afternoon to melt
on each other’s pinched lips.
She was far more ready.
I brought my mouth into hers,
the hook
of my tongue cast
from my stomach,
and reeled back.

And reeled back.

Eventually
she tasted like bubblegum
or a seven-minute mile.

When we pulled the branches from our arms
and stepped full-breath
onto the hill by Town Hall
I don’t think she regretted
anything yet.

My hands were first to disappear
in the cold.

Added: February 17, 2012 | Last changed: May 11, 2014