I’ve Always Had a Thing for a Kid with a Habit – Caitlin Baird

her nose is bleeding     again         i have blood on my neck
she puts her finger in her nostril to dam it
tries to hold me back with her other hand     but instead i rest in her collarbone hollow     let her run
down my hairline into my ear     wait         soon she undams herself
scrapes the edge of her half-crusted cartilage with her pinky nail
tastes the damage           it’s still damp       oily
she smears the excess on the counter
i kiss her up against the dishwasher
her throat tastes like snot & swimming pool       acidic     like the smell of clean
thus i kiss her again & in the microwave reflection there’s her blood on my face
tracked across my cheek      a snail’s wet path      a neat line

(to impress me she scrapes out my name with her bank card,
breathes me in with a rolled up fiver,
says it’s a shame i’m only 7 letters long. & i love it, this ivory word,
the lost pale specks around me: salt on the frosted pavement of this town)

Caitlin Baird is Co-founder of baldhip magazine, Vice Editor-in-Chief at The Warren Review, and last year’s Lead Editor for poetry at This Side of West. She lives irl in Canada and online @bairdsandbees.

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