Sixteen and Adams
The sign in the school parking lot says,
"No right turns."
A Michigan cherry knot catches
between tongue and teeth.
The car lurches forward, and you almost choke
when the knot punches the back of your throat.
At the exit, you turn right anyway.
Your best friend asks whether you think
her jeans look like floods.
She tells you a story, and her finger traces lifelines
on upturned palms, mapping the roads and towns
that now hang on walls behind green glass doors.
You tease your mother for saying "ay-ggs" instead of "eh-ggs"
but realize that your mouth curls around the sound, too,
when you're not with her. You find yourself
tucking memories into a corner of your lungs,
waiting for the chance to exhale her image.
Late into the night, bards pass beneath the bridge
in a rite of passage. Their voices rattle the house walls;
their melodies carry you into sleep.
In waking hours, your teeth ache
from the sweet-sharp taste of dreaming.