Lucas Peel is a Florida Man by trade, shithead by star sign, and runaway by choice. Legend has it that he consumed so much Mountain Dew as a child that he still glows in the dark, though legend also says that he's a poet and therefore a liar. He says soda, is a y'aller, and apologizes for nothing. His poems can be found weeknights on cable channel 3 any time after 2:30 AM. Lucas was born in the year of the banana and currently lives in Honolulu, HI. He sometimes believes in love and also himself.
YOU SAY THERE ARE TWO TYPES OF COLD
in one, a shadow hangs on your bones like an old ghost;
the other is a color, or stillness or both.
this year, the glacier looks noticeably smaller, still melts
in the summer months, evergreen; we look to the sky,
bleeding into horizon, the cold peaks carving the earth with guilt.
here, we are all running from something: don was an ironworker once
until his back stopped agreeing with him so now he plays the blues
guitar and fries shrimp. margaret knows all of the kenai on a first name basis,
willy won the salmon derby last year on a gypsy jig and hasn’t stopped
talking about it since.
mark can’t go back to where he’s from but doesn’t want to talk about it,
he says, downing another glass of bourbon and smacking the jukebox
of the salty dawg like it owes him more than sound.
on my twenty first, he thaws an entire freezer of halibut,
invites the whole spit to celebrate the death of my youth with fried fish
and brown liquid. the old ferry offers a glacier special, chipping ice
from portage pass into some shitty house cocktail. we laugh at the brazenness,
to waste a million years of snowpack with booze from a plastic handle.
mark orders one anyway, says one day this will all be saltwater and i will
have drank from its sharp rim;
later, i spill the acid from my belly all over the boardwalk, he laughs,
tells me this is all we have to look forward to: the spill, leaving behind
parts of ourselves, staining the ground with presence.
when i hear his name again, the seasons have gone like the salmon’s run.
grant leads a search party into the woods, finds a stray dog, the empty
carcass of a tent. after a week, they abandon; the ice recedes
and the ground begins to regain its color.
even then, the cold remains.