Ari Lohr: “Elegy (i.)”

Elegy (i.)

i’m told that if you
fold a piece of paper in half 42 times,

the result is long enough
to reach the moon. somewhere

you hover between 33 and 34 folds.
i pleat the first crease.

you enfold me in your arms
divided by the delicate murmur of

electricity and hushed breaths.
the city unfolds

from daylight to dusk.
a car whizzes by.

we never speak of this moment.
i seal the fourth crease.

we are engulfed by the gentle
hiss of the radiator,

the muted hum of the TV screen. you reach for the
power button. i grab your hand.

after seven creases
the paper is too thick to fold further.

i unravel it and see a boy tango
with the gravity between static and saltwater.

in the margins, i scribble your name
Luka. Luka. Luka.

the bridge unwinds into music
and then nothing. the car

whizzes by and the city unfolds
from gentle whispers to muted static

and you reach for the power button
but no one grabs your hand. if i were to

fold this into an airplane and
throw it off the Golden Gate,

i wonder how far it would fly.


Ari Lohr is a wannabe-astronaut-turned-poet living with his four cats in Portland, Oregon. He can be found on Instagram as @i.o.jupiter.

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