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The Morning After - Olivia Klein

I wake with frosted breath under an unfamiliar armpit.

A foot I think is mine pretzels with Mystery Mans

replaying last night’s memories in my battered brain.

They scatter like exposed brick: revealing, trendy,

and fucking rough

enough to cut me open if I linger too long.

There’s that stench, the ~intoxicating in the moment~ one

(but painfully pungent morning after one) and I wonder

how hard do I have to work to get water?

Satiate me, please God I’ve been good…enough

lead me to water, I promise this whorse will drink.

I use every muscle to gulp, use the throat

he choked. I roll around my tenured tongue

in a hot haze I remember flesh, fun, four a.m.

fucking, felt finger-licking goooood.

Mystery Man, a tourist to my body

with a press pass that expires this morning

belonging now to the sky that has changed

colors seven times since I opened my eyes.

Don’t think too hard on it, just enough

to remember skin on skin on scorching

secrets, and regrets under the hot water

of hate. It melts me.

It’s amazing what you’ll get up to when you hate yourself.

Is it bad that I like this? The indiscretion

is incredible, the only way I feel immaculate.

If I leave now at least I can laugh about it,

the art of the ending.


Olivia Klein is a student at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. Olivia has previously been published in the New Medium Press “Riff/t” Issue and the Write Launch Literary Magazine in their May 2021 issue. Olivia spends her time writing poetry, singing songs, and loving her cat, Otis.


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