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RED POEM Red is so needy; so eager to spill onto the floor. A metaphor that fills cracks in cement after stabbings, lives in climates of palms, in myriaqd blotches where we rub, in dreams of coffee-stained moons in Budapest where the Danube crossed the road on which you left me after I ashed my cigarette in your dinner; the blush of your cheek still in my hand. You taught me that God is red, but like a sky recovering from a dog day in August the tapping of rain on the sizzling rooftops echoes reminders of you in postscript urgency: an image of a hummingbird's belly, a sliced blood orange on a white tabletop, the color of skin after the slap, your lips a red guitar. KITCHEN IN PASADENA Mother is stirring soup. Says she smells the Mediterranean. A Monarch butterfly appears from behind the rack on her way to Mexico or San Simeon. Glides from faucet to shoulder to ladle. Together, they listen to the bubbling of the ocean. -- Armine Iknadossian was born in Beirut, Lebanon and raised in Pasadena, California. She received her BA from UCLA and an MFA from Antioch University Los Angeles. She has just completed her first manuscript, Gnosis. Publications include Pasadena City College's Inscape, UCLA's Wisteria, Cal State Northridge's Edges, Lounge Lit: An Anthology of Poetry and Fiction by the Writers of Literati Cocktail and Rhapsodomancy and zaum. "The Return" was a finalist in Backwards City Review's annual poetry contest.