We carried photos of Lane but knew nothing about her.

Who found her page first, I can’t remember.

There she was, in a ball gown at a rest stop,
adolescence brandished
in the shadow of her collarbones.

How I wanted her body transposed
on my intellect. At break, we’d exaggerate
her importance: Lane is everything an L.A. girl should be,

Lane will never know me.

Back then we hoped unhappiness
held the key to happiness, that we’d be memorable
in the minds of others, the only minds that mattered.

Already I was learning posturing, already someone
showing me to choose the lesser choice.

All my friends and I wanted
was to be safe from one another.

All the wishing ends when the bone breaks.


I befriended Lane’s friend,
the famous son of a famous person.

I did this to become closer to Lane,
but we became friends and soon

talked for hours. I don’t remember
what it’s like to talk for hours with anyone,

to have time and use it recklessly
or feel that you are using it at all.

Now I’d like to get in touch
to tell him about this poem,

but the email we corresponded on
is gone, so is the phone,

and sometime I must have grown
indifferent or impatient

with my Trojan horse
of a pen pal.