1. Go to the window with pink carnations in your hands
2. Put on Al Green’s How Can You Mend a Broken Heart & listen to that
3. Step over each flowerhead flattened on the sidewalk
4. Whisper your mother’s name nine times
5. Listen to the hole in that voice
6. Listen to the hole in your mother's name
7. Heart broken, listen to Al Green
8. Mend the hole in her voice
9. Lift each flattened flowerhead
10. Open the window with her head in your hands
In a poem my sister writes, she says finally I am a better version of you. My chest bones crinkle like corpuscles; call her in this moment, waterstone blue, love with a million glinted pearls for a face.
My brother says the branch took the side of the skull off as we pass the embankment where the young soldier had crashed. It is afternoon; he apologizes, crying in his camo with his boots on.
We cannot know the remarkable velocity at which we are being pulled towards each other, with beer in our hands, life striking blue in our faces so slowly we don't notice and it is almost like killing each other.
If you slice space-time up like an apple, each slice is still a three-dimensional single instant of time.
Event horizons capture us in hallways, or during cartoons, and disrupt fantasy like a small galactic authority. I have become exceptional in talking desire away in words like not true, not possible, you'll see, from my sister's big, big mind.
If you slice up space-time like love between siblings, each slice is still a three-dimensional instant in a house.
When my brother slaps his four-year old son behind the Jeep in the Chuck E Cheese parking lot, remitting a force he has always had, he is slapping me.
It's not that I don't love my sister. It's that I can't tell her about secrets Mom told me about needing love, cannot give her the oakmoss Dad came home smelling like certain nights— or the night I spent with two boys, unable to move in a trailer. When I say don't be a pussy, stop crying, I mean I can't believe this is somehow not my fault. I don't mean to speak in red.
If we understand love is a singularity at which point its function takes on infinite value, there are no limits to what it can do to us.
Don't drink beer with Mom. Don't drink beer with your friends or with anyone unless you want to whisper pitifully your love to the beloveds your whole life, saying always what you shouldn't, moving away always and red, over and over and over, years.
We leave parts of ourselves everywhere we go. Anything less than breaking is completely unacceptable.
Sara Borjas is a poet, bartender, and writing instructor from Fresno, California. Her interests include space and time, memory, aromatics, modern classic cocktails, tiny prints and oldiez. She currently lectures in the Department of Creative Writing at UC Riverside and lives in Los Angeles and likes it there.