Kirsten Meehan

This is Not a Pilgrimage

Instead, my foot is bleeding.
Sticky blister wetness
mats into socks like regret.
You don’t love me
and I don’t care.

Slip another piece
of juicy fruit gum
into my mouth, crush it
between my teeth like nostalgia.
The sweetness blocks up
my throat and sinuses, as always,
the opposite of salt.
I’ve been here before.

There are so many ways
I do not want to remember you,

and so I walk
like the walking will save me.
I walk because I ache
too deeply to run.
I walk as my blisters burst
like blood-gorged mosquitoes
under the heel of a hand.

Another step, and I’m so aware
of all the ways I’m now an aftermath.

Kirsten Meehan was born and raised in Southern New York, growing up in the same house her father grew up in. She received her BFA in Creative Writing from SUNY Potsdam, and then worked in the publishing industry for a time after graduating. Her work has appeared in the Hare’s Paw Literary Journal, Blueline Magazine: College Edition, and the Red Fern Review. Currently, she is a student at Arcadia University, studying towards an MA in English and an MFA in Poetry.