Vodka

Joel Brouwer
The Stoli bottle's frost melts to brilliance where I press my 
fingers. Evidence. Proof I'm here, drunk in your lamplit kitchen, 
breathing up your rented air, no intention of leaving. Our lust
squats blunt as a brick on the table between us. We're low on
vocabulary. We're vodkaquiet. Vodkadeliquescent. Vodka doesn't
like theatrics: it walks into your midnight bedroom already
naked, slips in beside you, takes your shoulders in its icy hands
and shoves. Is that a burglar at the window? No, he lives with
me, actually. Well, let him in for Christ's sake, let's actually get this
over with.

From Centuries by Joel Brouwer. Copyright © 2003 by Joel Brouwer. Reprinted by permission of Four Way Books. All rights reserved.

From Centuries by Joel Brouwer. Copyright © 2003 by Joel Brouwer. Reprinted by permission of Four Way Books. All rights reserved.

Joel Brouwer

by this poet

poem
The music on TV turned gloomy. Sharks,
she said, and sure enough. A blunt snout,
jumbled cemetery of teeth, and quick black
depthless eye thrashed the screen. Coffee
and oranges made the morning acidic.
She said, the cello is the instrument
of the inevitable. White clouds
of jasmine devoured a trellis. He said,