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My Eyes Can Only See You

Your heart is racing, my doctor says

and puts me on more pills and less pills

and pills to lessen the more pills. I’m tired


of debating this although why not

just tell you I never hesitated I just did

what my body wanted, your mouth, my heart


beats out of time in what is maybe now dozens

of subway stops and city corners I’ve waited for you.

Until yesterday, I had to take my glasses off


to see up close. Why why why might be

my only question, but seeing you is extra-ocular.

Remember when I saw you? Suddenly there.


I couldn’t imagine you would wish for me

when you are so beautiful and I, I do believe

in fate, less in myself, longed/burned/wanted.


Your eyes are swollen, another doctor says,

have you been crying a lot—what is a lot, I ask,

this is the 21st century—I just want to see


how the letters come into focus—not at all

not at all and the E F P T O Z  until I start

to memorize them and all they were ever


going to spell is your name, which I can see

clearly on the chart, always in view, what about

now? Yes, now, still now, ever only.






Lynn Melnick

Pronouns: She/Her

1 Poem

My Eyes Can Only See You


Lynn Melnick (she/her) is the author of the poetry collections Refusenik (forthcoming 2022), Landscape with Sex and Violence (2017), and If I Should Say I Have Hope (2012), all with YesYes Books. I've Had to Think Up a Way to Survive, a book about Dolly Parton that is also a bit of a memoir, is forthcoming from University of Texas Press in 2022.

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