it was one of those nights we didn’t do our usual neighborhood route
but instead, the long one—the one around the golf course
where we followed what might’ve been party music for hours, but never got any closer.
We passed the house that looked like the president’s and something
that night made you change your mind about hating the people that lived there because
even though they wanted to be gaudy with their columns, you decided you loved
that they put rats in the front lawn on Halloween and for some reason, owls on Valentine’s Day.
The Gardenia’s were our moon and it felt like we were walking in a pupil.
When we first passed the white you asked can you smell that? Beautiful, isn’t it?
And I agreed and put my head down and pinched the nail on my thumb
because you always answered the phone with hi beautiful when I called you at work
and for the first time I got to see what it looked like. And Dad, I guess I’m thinking about this today because I haven't spoken to you since I told you I liked girls
and all I can think about is how you’re going to greet me the next time I call.
Emma Reyes is a poet born & raised in Miami, FL. She is currently getting her MFA at Florida State University.