Peeled Apples

The last time I saw Michael,
we were driving through garlic

fields when he turned down Ben Folds
& asked me to try molly with him sometime.

You can feel everything, he said,
Like every pore is a channel

but my pores are wide
as subway tunnels & often I would rather board

them up. Is there a drug that can stop me
from weeping at the curtain drop

of every small town play?
It’s embarrassing, to be in love

with everything you see,
to open yourself like a blouse

to the world over & over.
Two weeks later, Michael

got caught, fifty counts over eight years
his middle-school students, so many

Jane Does. I had no words for my grief
& suddenly I couldn’t stop

making apple pie—
That fall, I probably baked twenty,

peeling whole crates of honeycrisp, pink lady
& Granny Smith, lining up ranks

of unarmed naked fruit on my counter,
strips of shiny skin dropping to my floor.