Monday, February 8, 2016

2016 The Bookshelf by Zoe Skowronski

First Place Winner in Poetry wins $300

My love for you is jaundiced like the pages of a book untouched, and I could pry apart the pages, but I no longer crave the pain that follows.

If you were here, I might be happy, yet not nearly as accomplished, because my sadness is the most beautiful artist.

Happiness inspires a laziness, which I am not yet sure I want.

For now, I keep you on the bookshelf.

And I wonder if you are happy residing on that bookshelf, if another has read you, and if they better resonate with your story.

You were my favorite novel; perhaps someone else now makes that claim.

But we are not meant to read just one work in our lifetimes, even though we each acquire a partialness to a certain one.

I loved your sentences like I needed air, but I cannot love what is no longer here.

I resent you for your choice to end the story, even if it was hard for you, it was harder for me, as it was not my doing.

Still, I keep you on the bookshelf.

As I read more, I find that there is a surprising variation of words that I have never encountered before, and I like some of them almost as much as yours.

However, new words do not replace the old ones as I had anticipated; they only gain their own spots on the shelf.

I have become a library of failed relationships.

The bookshelf overflows.

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