What I’d like is to tell you the redemption story.
The same shine as balloons: a remnant of white
in the sullen pupils of the dead-in-life, and how

those dead may be made new, if they’ll fix a gaze
long enough on just about anything the wind
chooses to play with. A bonus for dusk, a grove

of palmettos, or her flyaway hairs. In the gut,
we recall a meal of wild fennel. In the teeth,
a meal of raw game. Where the blood is born—

in the bones—we know nothing so well as
the grave we broke free of. It’s the song
the hand plays over the mattress. A wish,

a quick visit from the ghosts you most miss.
And yet this knowledge, like the rest, is only
a veil I admire in my hands. I wear it a while

and things go too purple. Or what was small
appears to have grown. And in the mirror,
only fog is resolved. I still struggle to rise.

Joshua Kleinberg's work has appeared in Whiskey Island, the Southeast Review, Spork, H-ngm-n, and the anthologies Chorus: A Literary Mixtape (2012, MTV Books) and New Poetry from the Midwest (2015, New American). He lives in New York where he is an MFA candidate at Columbia University.