Touch Me

touch meThese days, I sleep lopsided in the bed, made up with my Egyptian cotton sheets that I bought with my guy from Target. For a long time I had no one but my son and men in short installments. My son is an adult now.

This guy is tall and slim with wire glasses. He’s a runner, like me. He has no large intestine. When I see his scars, I can’t help but wonder what it feels like. He practices Thai Chi, goes to mass every Sunday.

In the bed, he says it has been years. I try to show him what it means to touch me. I am a teacher by profession. Afterwards, he laughs. With the last guy, he’d pull me in and hug me.

When he comes, he opens the garage door. I had to go away. I asked him to house-sit, and when I came back I found my home with all his things there.

I think of other breakups. I imagine all my exes: opponents, yet a team, exchanging our batons, dropping them, then bending. Carrying them again until we can’t stand to keep them.

Kim Chinquee is the author of the collections Pretty, Pistol, and Oh Baby. She is associate editor of New World Writing, chief editor of ELJ (Elm Leaves Journal), and an associate professor of English at SUNY-Buffalo State College.

Photo Credit: Manuel Delgado Tenorio

2 Responses to “Touch Me”

  1. I’ve been a fan of Kim Chinquee’s work for many years. So happy to see her here. Thanks for publishing!

  2. Joy Manné says:

    Tender and intense, and a different view on ex-es

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