Spider Vein / by Molly Guinn Bradley


the precious territories
of the backs of knees, of elbow bones,
of bruises, are not
cheap and are not

you've never felt as sticky-cool and
honest as in the slight rain
on a late June day
after a round of beers
and rejection all year.

your mother has a spider vein,
huge and bulging on her lower leg,
and you're starting to see the red lines
in your own thighs, tangling;
is it just you, or are they beginning
to spell out
ha, ha—

you notice other frailties:
a tenderness of one side of your neck,
a clicking in your knee,
an uneven symmetry in the way
you love harder when you are

your heart is not replaceable
but it's depreciated significantly and so is
cheaper than it's ever been.

come here and fit
the bend of your elbow into
the crook of my knee
and let's examine the parts of
each other
we can't even see.

I’m afraid. you’re right.
but as long as you say,
just do it for me—






Molly Guinn Bradley is a writer and editor living in New York City. Her work has appeared on The Toast, The Equals Record, Splitsider, and Defenestration Mag. She enjoys long walks along the dirty, dirty Hudson.