a poem at the gate of a new birth year// / by Emily Busch

I say the word     love

I say it more than ever

like I'm an opera singer

warming up for the stage

lalalalalalalala love

lalalalalalalala love

living things respond

both animal and human varieties

wrap their necks to mine in a

delicate swan maneuver


here come the knee-jerk loves

falling out of my mouth

where does this hardening come from

I hear so many speak of

this calcifying

over time?


for me

I work the love

like lemon oil

on leather

like fridge butter

brought to hot toast