A Love Poem to a Map

Maps are never skin. I know
that you’re only a guide but
I prefer to pretend otherwise.
Lean over, let me slide my hand

under the couplings of letters
and numbers that cinch your stockings

together. Let me spread you open, let me
undo the tangle of rivers, interstates, and

country roads until they spill out
soft as hair across my lap.

The rustle of sheets hangs in the air
as I trace out each route, the friction

of my fingertips against each delicate
path. The key makes you real, it stretches

inches into miles. It can turn
the idea of something into the thing itself.

– Jamison T. Crabtree


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