Retrofuturism Homesick Blues by Aaron Sandberg

Image by ELG21 from Pixabay

My poems keep starting with Once
as if the past is something else.

Look:

Once, we put our hands
in front of lips

to keep the kiss
from counting—

to keep the branch
from blooming,

to keep adults
away.

And then
whatever we were
was over

[as if
whatever
we are
is over].

Say you see me in museums
and knowing that museums

make me tired
you say something tiresome like

this is what they thought
the new would be.

Say you see
me here,

standing in front of exhibits,
talking to machines,

you and me
taking turns

trying to make
the robots say

I love you
back—

all of us
divided by glass

and
rope,

where we
will be loved

[are loved,
were loved],

safely from
this distance.


Aaron Sandberg thinks Strawberries taste nowhere near as good as we’re led to believe and he’s sick of the lies. He’s appeared or is forthcoming in Asimov’s, No Contact, I-70 Review, Alien Magazine, The Shore, Plainsongs, West Trade Review, The Offing, Sporklet, Right Hand Pointing, Halfway Down the Stairs, and elsewhere. A Pushcart and Best of the Net nominee, you can see him—and his poetry posts—on Instagram @aarondsandberg.

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