Marc Rahe

Your face in that hour between
two nighttime hours
is the place your breaths occur 
without you. An unlatched gate
opened by the wind
settles back to rest on its hinges.
Leaves on the branches, leaves
on the ground are red, gold
despite the bleaching of night --
its palette of yes and no.
I can't get back to sleep.
There is a murmur
of music from outside -- 
a neighbor parked but hasn't
gone in -- a deep sound 
with indiscernible lyrics.
I watch you for you while 
your face is here in our midst.

Our Worry Nested on the Couch
When we opened to blow the steam from our mug
worry, too, raised its digits
as if to cradle, leaned forward
to position its fleshless skull
near ours. Worry’s jaw lowered
releasing only starlight. Still
worry did polish the upholstery
with the duration of its own robed worry.
Worry would shift to mimic our shifting,
would rise when we rose
to fall later back into our locations
to be held as we were held --
yieldingly but firmly enough
that some hint of our curvature
will survive us
when we leave our furniture behind. 

Marc Rahe is the author of The Smaller Half (Rescue Press, 2010), On Hours (Rescue Press, 2015), and Gravity Well (Rescue Press, 2020). His poems have appeared in The Iowa Review, jubilat, MAKE Literary Magazine, Pangyrus, PEN Poetry Series, Sixth Finch, and other literary journals. He lives in Iowa City.