On meeting a former lover for pie in southern Louisiana

I thought I knew everything:
your mother’s smile, the smell
of pine tar and raw molasses,
grave regret. I watched you
finger a wristwatch at
a pie shop in Lecompte and
remembered my fingers
reaching for peaches, brushing
your neck electric.
We are delicate, the selves
we build, taut skin stretched
on heavy-fruited trees. In
thinning days of summer you
played with a curl of monkey-
grass and flitted through
tumbles of leaves.

John Belk

John Belk is an Assistant Professor of English and Writing Program Director at Southern Utah University. He holds an MFA in Poetry and a PhD in Rhetoric and Writing from Pennsylvania State University, though his home will always be the swamp waters of northern Louisiana.