Second Skin

He wore the sea
like a second skin,
salt coating his flesh
like a winter jacket
in May.
I asked when he lost her
since only absence
and losing
could create such a covering
of sadness.
He remembered
her hands
and her smile
as she clung to the window
and waved goodbye.
His bones have grown old,
atrophied around a memory
of a day he spent
loving a girl
who would always
walk away.

Her eyes ripple
and undulate
as the waves
on the deep
and faraway ocean.
I asked her
who she was missing
since puzzle-shaped pieces
carved themselves
from her skin.
Only longing
could scar a body
with infinite emptiness.
She said
she had left him
on the side of the road
next to a gas station
in Florida.
She watched
as his shape grew smaller
in the rearview.
Her fingers
have grown stale
and twisted
around memories
of a week
on white sandy beaches,
of a bright boy
who has transformed
into an empty man.


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