your skin is tree bark,
the kind i, as a child, would strip from the trunk.
“it’s like skin, don’t take its skin away,” mama said.
so why do i try to pull it back?
i want to see your heart humming inside your ribcage.
sex. that act. is that important?
“i just wanted to get it over with,” you said.
would we just be getting over it?
just a speedbump.
sex. it’s what we strive for as humans.
what does it take to be a spineless fleshbag?
what must suck or be sucked?
we both are fated to ill morals.
but you just call it missing me.
8 days of standing in the corner,
bending over till my back
is sore with hand marks.
RALEIGH WALTER is a junior at Interlochen Arts Academy. She has been published in the Red Wheelbarrow. She has received a gold key for poetry and a silver key for fiction in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. She draws inspiration from nature and from her connections within her own family. She is currently interested in floriography, the language of flowers. She also enjoys writing fiction and screenwriting.