They Need Something More Durable Than Longing and Wine by Charles Rafferty

This is why lovers show off their dog bites and appendectomy scars, the tattooed crosses they have come to regret. They keep them hidden until they can’t, until somebody touches with a tongue the place that used to hurt. After all this time, ink remains the standard medium of love letters. It’s how the future knows what happened.

Charles Rafferty‘s most recent collection of poems is The Smoke of Horses (BOA Editions, 2017). His poems have appeared in The New Yorker, O, Oprah Magazine, Prairie Schooner, The Southern Review, and Ploughshares.

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