Beside Everything, in Paris

The morning was warmer than the one before, with
a blue demitasse lighting your hand up
in front of Notre Dame, its steam disappearing
like its insides.
And the gold flush of my shoulder against your cheek.

We held our mouths for Americans behind us, saying
Isn’t this something? in their great deep declarations.
But then, isn’t it? Walking beside you with a
Pink Lady mouth, feet falling open, oranges,

and then, the return to each other after sleep. That
hot agreement of
Yes, I will wake up, and next to you. This is what we do.
And cool wine was a glass-smashing sort of

lovemaking, small eyes looking over the cusps. We drank
that down, and it opened our throats for more. And
the black sneezes. The flight home, your mouth back and open like a clam, the white clams
in their ice coffins. I was rubbing my knee instead of yours.


Olivia Heggarty is a poet and writer from Belfast, Ireland. Her work can be found in Skylight 47 and Abridged. Olivia is the editor-in-chief of the Queen’s University literary magazine, The Apiary.