Traveling, by Kayla Nicole Krut

Z’s scared of stopping in case each is progressively
better than its last and stopping stops that.
X returns from Barcelona in early summer while
Y ships off to Barcelona in the low arc of the same season,
neither knowing the other man. Both spent enough already,
thinking they need or needed xenos like they do.
It’s a hemispherical Rolodex, the tabs kept on quotidian
trials and climaxes and flushes of American young men
by women, or sometimes by each other or themselves.

Today for example out front of the café that rubs campus
Y meets Z and apologizes he’ll be a shit-for-brains pen-pal.
Z wonders whether she expected more, and doesn’t,
and laughs like a horse when he stands to embrace.
It just feels already like a long time,
Y says, but having let X wander
violently in all cardinals as she has,
Z is not fazed by Y’s departure. It’s not Stoicism, no!,
the distance kept by an iced epistolarian from either star sign.
Because X only returned one or a few letters, even then with postcards,
charming in their stuttery laconism. You won’t miss me!,
Z swears, and though Y protests it’s of no use,
he already blurs her features sometimes with those of a gator or a swamp.
Kayla is a 3rd-year Comp Lit major at Berkeley, studying English, Latin, and German. Right now she’s reading Rilke, Rumi, Roethke, and other things that start with R but also other things that don’t start with R. Go further at

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