sunlight through the honey jar, Second Place in Poetry

sunlight through the honey jar

by Savannah Bradley

we argue over the pronunciation of caramel for an hour
in the car. i say it the long way, the “wrong way,” according to him.
look it up. if he’s right, i’ll buy him a glass-coated cream cola-
glutinous and teeth-ruining, the flavor that tastes like me.

he’s right, then shatters the bottle in the gas station parking lot
before we dissolve. we listen to the chain and i yell at him
to keep both hands on the wheel after the guitar solo detonates.
keep us together. aquatic graveyards and tobacco flower canopies

yes, i have seen all of carolina. i know the south and i know him,
infuriating, spellbinding, feet running in clay. hold the magic.
i don’t fight him for tenderness. it’s already there, and i can feel it
when he asks me if i want to stop to eat on the road or tells me to

get some sleep in the backseat. filling me up with love like a
locust swarm, he asks me what kind of house i want when we’re
antique and ornery. i don’t want a front door. i want something
like this, something that moves. we carry, we crystallize, we arrive

walking into the old house, my grandfather does not care
about his long hair or combat boots or pirate teeth. instead,
he seethes at his melanin. native blood- the color of sunlight
through the honey jar, kar-mull, love.