gathering by twos to the heat, voices loud
to match the crackling wood. They see
each other and curl cold hands together and
are blind to the stars
and me, and you.
a match behind your empty hand
and your fingers are a red glow. Shadow
flickers over your face.
You puff smoke and steamed breath, toss
the dark-burned stick, see
my empty hand matching and you want
to fill mine with yours.
to the rustling grass,
and stretch my fingers into the icy air, refusing
to curl or cling to yours.
Already in love
with the sky—not the stars
but the space between.