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© Helicon Magazine 2019

University of Bristol

 

two out of two

Ellen Crofton

Two girls possibly two women, 

two beers, two white wines two nights – one sober, one drunk, 

two hugging bodies, two tears, two laughs 

two of us, too sad, too happy, too brave, too scared.

Two out of two times we ignore the fact that we’re the sun  

bleaching out our faces from the never-present photo

and when we bleach out our faces it leaves a mark, 

not an absence.

A mark that looks like the first ever happy shadow

and we dip our fingers in the ink that we might lose,

and we smudge new smiley faces on the photo – 

new smiley faces on our sad ones. 

We can save our ink fingerprints for later,

because I like the irregular parabola 

of our childlike smiles on our childlike drawings.

Is it ok to frame a stained bleach stain? 

Is it ok to not know whether this picture of us now, 

in this second

is beautiful or ugly?

Is it ok that I don’t know whether to laugh or cry?

Do you think it’s ok that we’re ok?